Birds, Orphans and Fools (1969) Juraj Jakubisko
Birds, Orphans and Fools (1969) Juraj Jakubisko
Birds, Orphans and Fools (1969) Juraj Jakubisko

The Melbourne Cinémathèque & ACMI present

Birds, Orphans and Fools

Co-presented by the Czech and Slovak Film Festival of Australia

Juraj Jakubisko | Czechoslovakia | 1969 | Unclassified (15+)

This event has ended and tickets are no longer available.


Wed 5 Oct 2022

Shot under highly straitened circumstances, and featuring astonishing cinematography from Igor Luther and a score by the great Zdeněk Liška, Jakubisko’s third feature, written with Karel Sidon (latterly the Chief Rabbi of the Czech Republic), is a mosaic-like parable set in an undefined space and time. Nonetheless, its crazy world without ideals, and filled with violence, cynicism and hopelessness, surely references Czechoslovakia after August 1968. A work of great, fluid, unfettered exuberance at odds with the concurrent despondent mood of the Czechoslovak nation, it remains the quintessential Jakubisko film. Restored digital print courtesy of the Slovak Film Institute.

Format: DCP
Language: Slovak with English Subtitles
Source: Slovak Film Institute
Runtime: 78 mins

Event duration

78 mins


Unclassified (15+)


Cinema 1, Level 2
ACMI, Fed Square

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Also screening on Wed 5 October

About the program

Gallows Bacchanalias, Fractious Fairy-Tales and the Rule of Three: The Cinema of Juraj Jakubisko (Wed 5 – Wed 15 Oct)

The irrepressible Juraj Jakubisko (1938–) represents the baroque vanguard of the Czechoslovak New Wave’s Slovak contingent. After assisting on early works by fellow students Jaromil Jireš and Věra Chytilová at Prague’s FAMU film school, Jakubisko soon made his own mark with a succession of acclaimed, flamboyant and provocative films which saw him dubbed “the Slovak Fellini” at the 1968 Venice Film Festival, but which also earnt him the sustained wrath of his nation’s censors, with three of his four 1960s features shelved until after 1989’s Velvet Revolution, including the extraordinary Birds, Orphans and Fools that opens this season.

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Juraj Jakubisko with dog

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