The Prime of Life (1967) Juraj Jakubisko
The Prime of Life (1967) Juraj Jakubisko
The Prime of Life (1967) Juraj Jakubisko

The Melbourne Cinémathèque & ACMI present

The Prime of Life

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

Juraj Jakubisko | Czechoslovakia | 1967 | Unclassified (15+)

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Wed 12 Oct 2022

Abetted by the brilliant Igor Luther’s grainy, overexposed black-and-white cinematography, Jakubisko’s inventive, existential, semi-autobiographical debut feature “signalled not only the birth of an exceptional talent, but also the birth of a Slovak style” (Mira and Antonín J. Liehm). Two brothers in their early 30s – the film’s original Slovak title translates literally as “Christ’s Years”, alluding directly to the age of 33 as signifying one’s peak – establish, through their absurdist games, that life is made up of “love, foolishness and death”.

Format: DCP
Language: Slovak with English Subtitles
Source: Slovak Film Institute
Runtime: 95 mins

Event duration

95 mins


Unclassified (15+)


Cinema 1, Level 2
ACMI, Fed Square

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Also screening on Wed 12 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.

Read the full program notes
Juraj Jakubisko with dog

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