The Melbourne Cinémathèque & ACMI present
Stars of Prague’s avant-garde Liberated Theatre, Jiří Voskovec and Jan Werich wrote this Depression-era slapstick unionist comedy with director Frič and legendary screenwriter Václav Wasserman. The revered “V+W” double-act play, respectively, a workers’ rep who goes off-script live-to-air and a bankrupted factory owner who team up to make something of their and others’ lives. Often compared to René Clair’s À nous la liberté and Chaplin’s City Lights, it also parodies Eisenstein’s The General Line and was banned during the Nazi occupation.
35mm print courtesy of the National Film Archive in Prague.
Also screening on Wed 11 October
“All The World’s Bedlam”: Screwball, Czechoslovak style
Happy End (1967) – Wed 27 Sep, 7pm
An Old Gangster's Molls (1927) – Wed 27 Sep, 8.45pm
Eva Fools Around (1939) – Wed 4 Oct, 7pm
You Are a Widow, Sir (1971) – Wed 4 Oct, 8.45pm
Tomorrow I'll Wake Up and Scald Myself with Tea (1977) – Wed 11 Oct, 7pm
Heave Ho! (1934) – Wed 11 Oct, 8.45pm
About the program
This season charts 50 years of a peculiarly antic, extraordinarily inventive strain of popular comedy from Czechoslovakia, spanning the late silent era through to the end of the 1970s. It highlights the extraordinary comedic talents of performers still famed domestically but too little known in the anglophone world...
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About Melbourne Cinémathèque
Australia's longest-running film society, Melbourne Cinémathèque screens significant works of international cinema in the medium they were created, the way they would have originally screened.
Melbourne Cinémathèque is self-administered, volunteer-run, not-for-profit and membership-driven.