Archive of films Photographer / Fotograf
2015, 133 min
Section: Czech Films 2014–2015
Scenes from the unruly life of a popular artist-turned-celebrity based on the fortunes of photographer Jan Saudek (b. 1935), who was also involved in the screenplay. This acerbic comedy focuses on the maestro’s relationships with women, particularly the initially submissive Líba (in real life his former partner Sára).
This acerbic biographical comedy subtitled “I Think You Should Calm Down, Ladies…!” is loosely inspired by the life of renowned photographer and celebrity Jan Saudek, outstandingly portrayed by Karel Roden. The film, appealing in its theme and treatment, focuses on the maestro’s relationships with women, specifically the devoted Líba, who enjoys subtle yet complete control over Jan (her character is undeniably inspired by his former partner Sára Saudková). In addition to numerous indelicate scenes, the brief flashbacks also reveal Jan’s ill-fated past (conflicts with the police and state security agents, a nightmare from his childhood), and there’s also room for staging Saudek’s famous photographic nudes, for which the models were usually morbidly obese. Pavlásková also exposes the artist’s quirky personality, where exhibitionism and vanity go hand in hand with Saudek’s fragility and male naivety, and his desire to extricate himself from his private solitude. In 1993 director Irena Pavlásková shot a portrait of Saudek for the GEN TV series.
About the director
Irena Pavlásková (b. 1960, Frýdek-Místek, Czechoslovakia) studied documentary film at FAMU (1979) and made waves with her half-hour stylised graduate documentary A Soap-Bubble World (1985). She examined her recurrent theme of warped personal relationships (especially between the sexes) in the award-winning psychological drama Time of the Servants (1989) which, after Corpus delicti (1991), she followed up with the loose sequel A Time of Debts (1998). She later opted for an adaptation of Barbara Nesvadbová’s bestseller The Bitch’s Diary (2007), then a retro-comedy wading through the social mire of Normalisation based on Tereza Boučková’s autobiographical screenplay An Earthly Paradise for the Eyes (2009), and now Photographer (2015). Pavlásková usually writes the scripts for her films, and also makes documentaries and TV programmes. She taught direction at FAMU and has her own production company, Eydelle film.
About the film
|Section:||Czech Films 2014–2015|
|Screenplay:||Irena Pavlásková, Jan Saudek|
|Dir. of Photography:||David Ployhar|
|Art Director:||Petr Pištěk|
|Production:||Cineart TV Prague s.r.o.|
|Coproduction:||Eydelle film, Česká televize|
|Cast:||Karel Roden, Marie Málková, Vilma Cibulková, Zuzana Vejvodová, Václav Neužil|
|Contact:||Cineart TV Prague s.r.o.|