Sections of 54th KVIFF
- Official Selection - Competition
- Official Selection - Out of Competition
- East of the West - Competition
- Special Events
- Documentary Films - Competition
- Another View
- Future Frames: Generation NEXT of European Cinema
- Midnight Screenings
- Czech Films 2018–2019
- Tribute to Youssef Chahine
- People Next Door
- Out of the Past
- Prague Short Film Festival Presents
Directed by: Maryam Touzani
Morocco, France, Serbia, 2019, 98 min
Taciturn Abla runs a small bakery in the house she shares with her eight-year-old daughter Warda. One day their routine is disturbed by an unexpected knock at the door. Pregnant Samia is looking for a temporary place to stay in exchange for work. This understated drama about the magical power of human solidarity, delicious pastries, and Moroccan music was cheered by audiences at this year’s Cannes fest.
Amazing Grace /
Directed by: Alan Elliott, Sydney Pollack
USA, 2018, 87 min
Oh Lord! In 1972 Aretha Franklin recorded her greatest gospel album, and director Sydney Pollack was there to capture the explosive spiritual music, Aretha’s singular charisma, the African-American community in Los Angeles, period outfits and the ecstasy. As The New York Times wrote: “Don’t bother with tissues. Bring a towel!”
The Cordillera of Dreams
Pohoří snů /
La Cordillera de los sueños
Directed by: Patricio Guzmán
Chile, France, 2019, 85 min
A documentary essay as much about memory as it is about mountains since the Andes have always protected Chileans from the outside world, but they have also kept it ruthlessly isolated. The history of the country is thus forever associated with this inhospitable and yet beautiful range, which is perhaps its last hope.
The Dead Don't Die
Mrtví neumírají /
The Dead Don't Die
Directed by: Jim Jarmusch
USA, Sweden, 2019, 105 min
Cliff (Bill Murray) and Ronnie (Adam Driver), two otherwise calm police officers in the sleepy town of Centerville, are beginning to get worried. Animals are disappearing without a trace, clocks have stopped, and night isn’t falling. And the creatures roaming the town are vaguely familiar. Jim Jarmusch’s zombie comedy, which opened this year’s festival in Cannes, also stars Chloë Sevigny, Tom Waits, Iggy Pop, and Tilda Swinton.
Diego Maradona /
Directed by: Asif Kapadia
United Kingdom, 2019, 130 min
The entire life of Diego Maradona may be concisely summarized by the seven dramatic years he spent in Naples. After Asif Kapadia’s riveting Senna and mournful Amy, the master of the documentary compilation opted for a portrait of the controversial Argentinian athlete. Although the football gods blessed him with unparalleled talent, off the field they made him pay dearly.
Ghost Town Anthology
Antologie města duchů /
Répertoire des villes disparues
Directed by: Denis Côté
Canada, 2019, 96 min
After a tragic event strikes the remote town of Irénée-les-Neiges, the locals try to come to terms with their sorrow and doubt, but the arrival of strangely silent outsiders commands their attention. This melancholy portrait of a dying town, which screened in the main competition at this year’s Berlinale, plays with the ambiguity of the phrase “ghost town” and with the conventions of the ghost movie.
Directed by: Leonardo D'Agostini
Italy, 2019, 105 min
Young Christian Ferro is a born striker and the pride of A.S. Roma. The cosseted soccer star is always up for anything, but the excesses in the celebrity’s private life are starting to jeopardise a promising career. A radical decision from the club president isn’t long in coming, and Valerio, a personal tutor, appears on the scene with a seemingly impossible task. This intelligent comedy is the superlative debut of talented Leonardo D’Agostini.
The Invisible Life of Eurídice Gusmão
Neviditelný život Eurídice Gusmãové /
A vida invisível de Eurídice Gusmão
Directed by: Karim Aïnouz
Brazil, Germany, 2019, 139 min
It’s 1950. Inseparable sisters Euridíce (18) and Guida (20) live with their conservative parents in Rio de Janeiro. Each girl has her own special dream in life, and neither can imagine being without the other. And yet one day they’ll have to go their separate ways… With this stylistically precise period melodrama, renowned Brazilian director Karim Aïnouz gave audiences one of the most emotional experiences at this year’s festival in Cannes, where The Invisible Life of Eurídice Gusmão won the Prix Un Certain Regard.
Directed by: Shinya Tsukamoto
Japan, 2018, 80 min
When a group of aimless ronin meet in the picturesque Japanese countryside, you can bet that things are about to get dicey. Tsukamoto’s period drama is a fine-tuned genre film, a tale of romantic destiny, and a provocative meditation on human values.
Light of My Life
Světlo mého života /
Light of My Life
Directed by: Casey Affleck
USA, 2019, 119 min
In his evocative sophomore effort, set in a dystopian era when almost all the women have died of an unknown disease, Casey Affleck plays a father journeying through an oppressive landscape with his 11-year-old kid Rag; their only goal is to survive. This highly contemplative and stark picture confirms the filmmaker’s exceptional qualities in the realm of North American independent cinema.
Directed by: Jonah Hill
USA, 2018, 85 min
When thirteen-year-old Stevie comes across a group of older skateboarders, he immediately wants to join them. What more could a kid in the nineties want than to forget all his problems and head out for adventure? This coming-of-age story about a carefree, risk-filled adolescence is Jonah Hill’s directorial debut.
Directed by: Juris Kursietis
Latvia, Belgium, Lithuania, France, 2019, 108 min
Oleg, a Latvian butcher living in Brussels, is trying to handle a difficult financial situation, but a false accusation costs him a promised job at a meat factory. When he becomes acquainted with a charismatic Pole named Andrzej who offers to help, it seems as though his fortunes have taken a turn for the better… Premiered at Cannes, the picture presents a multilayered, chillingly realistic look at the lives of the less privileged living in the heart of the European Union.
Naše doba /
Directed by: Carlos Reygadas
Mexico, France, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, 2018, 177 min
Juan and Ester have a farm where they breed fighting bulls. Juan is also a recognised poet, and he and his wife have an open relationship which allows them other lovers. But things get complicated when Ester starts sleeping with someone and says nothing about it to Juan.
Directed by: Mounia Meddour
France, Algeria, Belgium, Qatar, 2019, 106 min
Algiers in the nineties. Religious radicalism is gaining ground, and, further down the line, the result will be civil war. Eighteen-year-old Nedjma resists the changes via a flashy attempt to maintain her status as an independent woman – both in her relationships and in her choice of clothes. Brimming with girl power, this debut film brought a ray of light into the Un Certain Regard section at this year’s Cannes fest.
Directed by: Bong Joon-ho
South Korea, 2019, 132 min
The four-member Kim family lives in a small, run-down flat and is constantly struggling with money. Recommended by a friend, son Ki-Woo gets a chance to work for the rich Park family, and he starts putting together a grand plan… Bong’s masterful genre interplay, with its strong social message, unpredictable narrative, and skillfully paced, darkly comic scenes, deservedly earned the Palme d’Or at this year’s Cannes IFF.
Directed by: Benjamín Naishtat
Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Germany, France, Switzerland, 2018, 109 min
Although never directly stating when this tragicomic story of the petit-bourgeois Claudio takes place, this 1970s-style thriller hints at the period just before the military coup in Argentina when people began to disappear by the thousands. Benjamín Naishtat’s second film won three awards at San Sebastián – Best Cinematography, Best Director and Best Actor.
Narušitel systému /
Directed by: Nora Fingscheidt
Germany, 2019, 118 min
Nine-year-old Benni is a fragile kid filled with rage against all institutions because she believes they are keeping her from returning home to her mother. Will this young girl, who is constantly running away, find at least one person to love her unconditionally? This energetic yet painfully touching debut won the Alfred Bauer Prize at this year’s Berlinale.
První zrádce /
Directed by: Marco Bellocchio
Italy, France, Germany, Brazil, 2019, 145 min
Among the Sicilian Mafia, collaborating with the law amounts to treason, which is punishable by death and the eradication of the traitor’s entire family. And yet in 1986, Cosa Nostra member Tommaso Buscetta became a key witness in a grand Mafia trial.
Varda by Agnès
Varda podle Agnès /
Varda par Agnès
Directed by: Agnès Varda
France, 2019, 115 min
In this documentary, which was to be her last, the celebrated pioneer of the French New Wave demonstrates her distinctive flair as she takes us back to the sets of some of her best known films and brings to light her working methods and lifelong attitudes towards cinema and much else besides.
What You Gonna Do When the World's on Fire?
Co uděláš, až svět vzplane? /
What You Gonna Do When the World's on Fire?
Directed by: Roberto Minervini
Italy, USA, France, 2018, 123 min
The filmmaker gained access to an African-American community in the American South – to both ordinary people and to the otherwise reclusive Black Panthers. The sympathetic protagonists’ stories reflect the burning issues associated with ongoing racism in America, which not only segregates the black community but physically threatens its members on a daily basis.
Wherever You Are
Ať jsi kdekoliv /
Directed by: Bonifacio Angius
Italy, 2018, 98 min
Now in his fifties, Alessandro has been singing to unresponsive audiences in small-town clubs for years. After each gig he heads to a local bar, where he drinks his way through his meagre pay. The bleak monotony of this sensual hulk’s existence is radically shaken up by an encounter with Francesca, a childishly spontaneous woman with big green eyes. Set in the world of marginalised individuals, this unconventional romance unfolds on the sun-drenched island of Sardinia.
A White, White Day
Bílý bílý den /
Hvítur, hvítur dagur
Directed by: Hlynur Pálmason
Iceland, Denmark, Sweden, 2019, 109 min
As he goes through his late wife’s effects, former police officer Ingimundur begins to question whether he truly knew her. Hlynur Pálmason’s emotionally complex and hypnotic film stands out for Maria von Hausswolff’s excellent cinematography and Ingvar E. Sigurðsson’s performance as the mourning and increasingly stubborn widower.
Directed by: Danny Boyle
United Kingdom, 2019, 112 min
Yesterday everyone knew the Beatles, but today, by some miracle, only Jack remembers their songs. In the old world he tried for years to break onto the songwriting scene, but now, armed with an arsenal of the Fab Four’s greatest hits, he can truly smell success. Danny Boyle (Trainspotting, Slumdog Millionaire) brings us an irresistible comedy which demonstrates that, in life, all you need is love – and perhaps a little music, too.