Wednesday, 1 May
Eastern Dissidence: The Ear (Ucho)
The 1960s saw dramatic worldwide cultural and political changes, including in the so-called "Eastern Bloc" - the Soviet Union and its satellite states. Due to loosening cultural policies, filmmakers waged increasingly blatant critiques of totalitarianism. Eastern Dissidence focuses on films that confront historical, cultural, or generational conflicts and that resulted in blacklisting, censorship, and outright bans by the regimes they challenged. These films are a timely reminder of the power of art to question, criticize, and resist the status quo. Tonight, we watch Karel Kachyňa's bitter and brilliant satire The Ear (1970).
Bickering marrieds Ludvik (Radoslav Brzobohatý) and Anna (Jiřina Bohdalová) return from the ruling Communist party dinner to find that their house has been broken into. Drunkenness, paranoia, and claustrophobia set in, as they begin to suspect that their house has been bugged by the Party regime. Uncorking their bottled-up bitterness towards each other, Ludvik and Anna soon turn vicious, resulting in a deranged climax. Suggesting a cross between Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and The Conversation, Karel Kachyňa's dark satire is both a controversial depiction of marriage and an incredibly explicit critique of the Czech surveillance state. The Ear (Ucho) was banned for decades until the dismantling of Czechoslovakia. It combines both surveillance thriller motifs and experimental New Wave aesthetics to examine lives corrupted by totalitarianism.
Directed by Karel Kachyňa, 1970, Czechoslovakia, 94 minutes. In Czech w/ English subtitles.
Bar opens @ 18:30
Date & Time:
- 3-5 €