28th Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival

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Citizen Havel
Citizen Havel

Citizen Havel

director: Miroslav Janek, Pavel Koutecký
original title: Občan Havel
country: Czech Republic
year: 2008
running time: 122 min.


The screening of Citizen Havel will be followed by a Café Evropa debate "Activism in a passive society?" organized by Europeum and the European Parliament. The speakers will be Stanislav Daniel and Michaela Šojdrová. Moderated by Viktor Daněk. The debate will be held in Czech.

The Q&A after the screening is part of Café Europe programme organized by Europeum and the EU Parliament. The debate is hosted by Viktor Daněk accompanied by guests Stanislav Daniel, Lucie Bílková and Michaela Šojdrová. Q&A is held in Czech. A time-lapse portrait of President Václav Havel, completed by Miroslav Janek after Koutecký's tragic death, looks behind the scenes of the changing post-revolutionary society between 1992 and 2003. It revolves around the everyday life of a citizen who went from being the director of the Velvet Revolution to the protagonist of an absurd theatrical performance. This intimate testimony to the transformation of Havel's social role presents an image of the dissident in high politics as a relic of the times. With the emerging sharks of the new millennium, the bearer of hope becomes a lightning rod of social frustration at unfulfilled expectations, a symbol of an unattainable moral ideal that must still be striven for.

“We are entering an era of stable democracy, characterised by a system of a certain separation of powers. I am far from being the leader of a nation that decides everything and speaks into everything.” – Václav Havel


Pavel Koutecký (1956–2006), director, screenwriter and teacher, was one of the most important Czech documentary filmmakers. He collaborated with the Film and Sociology Association. He focused on time-lapse documentaries about the protagonists of the Velvet Revolution. After his tragic death during filming in 2007, the Pavel Koutecký Award began to be awarded.

more about film

director: Miroslav Janek, Pavel Koutecký
producer: Jarmila Poláková
Ministerstvo kultury
Fond kinematografie
Creative Europe Media
Město Jihlava
Kraj Vysočina
Česká televize
Český rozhlas