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Directed by Věra Chytilová • 1979 • Czechoslovakia
Starring Lukás Bech, Antonín Vanha, Eva Kacírková
One of the unsung masterpieces of Věra Chytilová’s still largely obscure post-sixties career, this stingingly satiric yet deeply human tragicomedy surveys the everyday absurdity of existence in a ramshackle, perpetually under-construction prefab housing complex: a monument to Soviet idealism that, in its forlorn shoddiness, becomes a symbol of its failings. Blending slapsticks gags with a jagged vérité visual style, Chytilová fashions a devastatingly funny portrait of life in a (literally) crumbling society.