Archive of films Life with Jester / Život s Kašparem

Czech Republic
2013, 86 min

Section: Documentary Films - Out of Competition
Year: 2013

This almost painfully sincere real-time documentary by Helena Třeštíková captures 23 years in the life of Jakub Špalek, a unique figure in Czech theatre, whose infinite love for the stage gradually became an obsession which had a fundamental impact on his private life.


This year Helena Třeštíková sent into distribution two more of her real-time documentaries: alongside the film Vojta Lavička: Up and Down, she offers us a portrait of Jakub Špalek a unique figure in Czech theatre. The shoot began in the autumn of 1989, when Špalek was one of the student leaders of the Velvet Revolution. Even back then he dreamt of establishing his own theatre, and it wasn’t long before the Jester theatre company was born. Over the years, however, his love for the theatre became an obsession which took its toll on his private life. Yet, without this obsession, would it have been possible to stage more than 500 performances a year, support the troupe from his own pocket, and keep its collective head above water while the subsidies petered out? This, at times, almost painfully sincere film about the need to find a balance between personal freedom, responsibility for others, artistic principles, and the desire for professional independence reflects twenty-three years in the life of someone utterly devoted to the theatre.

About the director

Helena Třeštíková (b. 1949, Prague) studied direction at FAMU (1974). In late 1990 she co-founded the Film & Sociology Foundation and, in 1994, the Man and Time Foundation. She has been developing her real-time documentaries, shot over several years, since her college piece Live Water (1972). She has made over 40 documentaries, the majority concerning human relationships, social problems and women’s issues, among them The Sweet Century (1998 – Best Documentary at KVIFF) and Women at the Turn of the Century, including the portrait of a female junkie Trapped (2001 – Special Mention at KVIFF). Long-term series: Tell Me Something About Yourself (since 1989) and Marriage Etudes (1987–2006). Karlovy Vary has also screened the documentaries Marcela (2006), René (2008 – awarded the European Film Academy’s Prix Arte for Best European Documentary), Katka (2010) and Private Universe (2012).


Produkce Třeštíková s.r.o.
Kostelní 14, 170 00, Praha 7
Czech Republic
Tel: +420 603 581 674
E-mail: [email protected]

Jirečkova 8, 170 00, Praha 7
Czech Republic
Tel: +420 224 947 566
Fax: +420 224 947 566
E-mail: [email protected]

About the film

Color, DCP

Section: Documentary Films - Out of Competition
Director: Helena Třeštíková
Screenplay: Helena Třeštíková
Dir. of Photography: Jiří Chod
Editor: Jakub Hejna
Producer: Hanka Třeštíková
Production: Produkce Třeštíková s.r.o.
Contact: Produkce Třeštíková s.r.o., Aerofilms
Distributor: Aerofilms


Helena Třeštíková

Film Director, Producer

Hanka Třeštíková


Jakub Hejna

Film Editor, Film Director

Jan Noháč



© 2021 FILM SERVIS FESTIVAL KARLOVY VARY, a.s. [email protected] +420 221 411 011 All contacts

CinemasCinemas PartnersPartners
ProgramProgram About the projectAbout the project
HistoryHistory GalleryGallery
HistoryHistory ContactsContacts
Archive of filmsArchive of films KVIFF TalksKVIFF Talks
Industry Days July 5 - July 8Industry Days July 5 - July 8 ContactsContacts
VideogalleryVideogallery GalleryGallery
HistoryHistory Festival GuideFestival Guide