Year of the Devil

Czech films are my passion, and I never meant to miss the latest film of Peter Zelenka on the big screen. Mr. Zelenka was until that day known to me as the scriptwriter for "Samotari" - one of my all time favourite movies. Intriguing plot, visual enjoyment - you got it. But "Rok dabla" is a completely different movie. It starts off quite slow as a filmmaker from Holland ends up in a hospital for alcoholics in the Czech Rep., and meets there the popular Czech singer-songwriter Jarek Nohavica. Later on Nohavica manages to come off over his sickness, but because of his best friend K.Plihal he joins a folk band that usually plays weddings and funerals and tours with that band "Cechomor" the country. Rock music - it`s what you get, but not only that. There`s the problem of alcohol, of belief in God, of happiness, of understanding thy neighbor etc., etc. What`s especially interesting is the fact that everybody in this film plays himself, incluing Jaz Coleman - the former leader of the punk-metal-satanic band "Killing Joke". But it isn`t a documentary, never mind how strange it would sound. It`s something like real people ar put into strange situations, where they encounter a world where normal things don`t happen very often. Cross-dressing, people exploding into little pieces, satanic rituals - it`s only the top of the iceberg what`s beneath it is what counts.
2004-09-19
8.5
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