Tyto webové stránky používají soubory cookies, které nám pomáhají zlepšovat naše služby, personalizovat reklamy a analyzovat návštěvnost. Používáním našich stránek s tímto souhlasíte.
Více informací

25th Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival

ji-hlavadok-revuecdfEmerging producersInspiration Forum

Vachek 80

The film work of Karel Vachek is hard to define or compare; it has to be experienced. The Czech filmmaker and poet of the documentary image has invited viewers to seek the essence of the things around them since the 1960s. With his latest film Communism coming up, we present the complete body of work of the maverick filmmaker.

film database

Armádní filmový měsíčník: Osvobození Ostravy
personal program

Armádní filmový měsíčník: Osvobození Ostravy

Karel Vachek
Czech Republic / 1965 / 14 min.
section: Vachek 80
100-Year Flood
Documentary about the dam failure at Cicov in June 1965.    
personal program

100-Year Flood

Karel Vachek, Ivan Koudelka
Czech Republic / 1965 / 20 min.
section: Vachek 80
A New Hyperion, or Liberty, Equality, Fraternity
Through a mosaic of events, opinions, and goings on, Karel Vachek records the situation preceding the Czechoslovak elections in 1990. With subtle irony he juxtaposes various phenomena and on the screen portrays the surprising socio-political context of the incredible whirl of the first free elections after the fall of the communist regime. The director is preoccupied with the abundance of goings on in the various social events, political ceremonies, and populist shows, where he is interested in every seemingly unimportant movement or subtle gesture, which transform the film into a diaphragm lens between the apparent and the concealed.
personal program

A New Hyperion, or Liberty, Equality, Fraternity

Karel Vachek
Czech Republic / 1992 / 196 min.
section: Vachek 80
Bohemia Docta or The Labyrinth of the World and the Lust-house of the Heart (A Divine Comedy)
Egon Bondy prophesies an inferno of global capitalism, Jim Čert admits to collaborating with the secret police, Jaroslav Foglar can’t find a bottle-opener for his beer, while Ivan Diviš makes observations about his own funeral. Director Jiří Krejčík can’t make movies and has a go at Vachek in front of the camera instead. In mid-battle, Karel Vachek goes down on his knees before the inventor of Semtex. This is the Czech Republic at the end of the 1990s. Vachek’s extensive film essay, examining the state and hidden mycelium of Czech scholarship, develops into a strange natural metaphor. The woodlands of Czech thought are interwoven, sustained and influenced by unseen threadlike hyphae, thanks to which even those that seemed withered and destroyed rise from the dead once more. The film itself becomes part of this process.
personal program

Bohemia Docta or The Labyrinth of the World and the Lust-house of the Heart (A Divine Comedy)

Karel Vachek
Czech Republic / 2000 / 294 min.
section: Vachek 80
Communism and the Net or The End of Representative Democracy
The six-hour essay in four parts examines the history of regimes and revolutions, leaders and martyrs, from a philosophical perspective. The collage of personal memories, staged scenes and archives of collective memory compares the Prague Spring to the Velvet Revolution and shows the exposure, conflict, crisis, and catharsis of the post-communist society. Democracy can be saved through creative laughter, dissolving the untouchability and hypertrophic egos of the representatives of state institutions. The Internet frees the society from representatives of the non-functional connecting link that prevents direct communication between citizens and institutions of power.     “I can see you until I spot you. Once I spot you, I cannot see you anymore.” K. Vachek

Communism and the Net or The End of Representative Democracy

Karel Vachek
Czech Republic, Slovakia / 2019 / 335 min.
section: Vachek 80
World Premiere
Elective Affinities
On 22 March 1968 President Antonín Novotný gave in to the pressure of the reformist communists headed by Alexander Dubček and resigned. It is necessary to elect a new head of state who has set out on the path of „socialism with a human face“. Karel Vachek with his crew encroaches behind the scenes of the then political goings-on, films fiery speeches, stormy meetings, tactical deliberations and run-of-the-mill tittle tattle of our leaders. His film is an enormously candid artistic reportage in the style of „cinema direct“, as well as a gentle parody of the investigative, politically committed film documentary. Able to stand back he follows characters big and small reminding us more of a comedy whose humour and irony though remains full of hope.
personal program

Elective Affinities

Karel Vachek
Czech Republic / 1968 / 85 min.
section: Vachek 80
Film o filmu: Komunismus
personal program

Film o filmu: Komunismus

Jan Strejcovský
Czech Republic / 2019 / 14 min.
section: Vachek 80
Kamil Lhoták, a film about the painter
Talking about art doesn’t work, if I want to say truth. When I express some rules I consider to go for this or that work of art, they look like a demagogic thesis. If I don’t want their stupidity to be offensive, I have to forget them, but that’s not convenient either. I have mentioned certain meaning of conventions before. As the rules are contradictary, so the work of art isn’t friendly to a man, who has made or watched it. Every work is followed by a guilt; and the suffering, which follows the creator’s guilt and which is a part of the work, creates the ethic value of the work and finally its real value.“ Karel Vachek, Kamil Lhoták, the film about the painter.
personal program

Kamil Lhoták, a film about the painter

Karel Vachek
Czech Republic / 1959 / 7 min.
section: Vachek 80
Moravian Hellas
The film debut of Karel Vachek, the most important personality in Czech film documentaries and one of the most important names in Czech cinematography as a whole. After the film was shown, the director was not able to shoot anything more for five years. “I shot Moravian Hellas and something happened. I had offended the convictions of the rulers of that time, that the only good art arose from the people. When it became apparent that the “people” is the embodiment of kitsch and shabby deals, the rulers were enraged and for five years I wasn’t allowed near a camera.” K. Vachek
personal program

Moravian Hellas

Karel Vachek
Czech Republic / 1963 / 34 min.
section: Vachek 80
Obscurantist and His Lineage or The Pyramids' Tearful Valleys
Karel Vachek’s latest documentary essay deals with the fine line between an internal belief in God and institutionalized religion. At the same time it brings up the need for a healthy sense of skepticism and the benefit of not believing in anything that advertises itself as certain. The filmmaker sets out for the USA, Japan, Great Britain, Poland, and the Balkans in his sometimes amusing investigation of spiritual substitutes, such as esoteric "teachings” or various fraudulent and magical practices, to which we sometimes fall prey due to our natural religious cravings. In addition to a Czech "prefab” family, who describe the carryings-on of their poltergeist, well-known mystery buffs appear in the film: Erich von Däniken, Raymond Moody Jr., and Ivan Mackerl. Director Vachek, however, uses no irony or ridicule, and although his position of skepticism in the film is clear, he is quick to point out surprising correspondences between the newest scientific hypotheses and the most ancient religious texts. 
personal program

Obscurantist and His Lineage or The Pyramids' Tearful Valleys

Karel Vachek
Czech Republic / 2011 / 209 min.
section: Vachek 80
What Is to Be Done? (A Journey from Prague to Český Krumlov, or How I Formed a New Government)
Quite a few years have passed since November 1989. Czechoslovakia has been divided up and, in the Czech Republic, Václav Klaus’s right- wing government is in power. Karel Vachek follows on from his film New Hyperion, thus continuing his series of comprehensive film documentaries in which he maps out Czech society and its real and imagined elites in his own unique way. This time he joins the "opposition”: he leaves Prague and the official political scene and sets out in search of alternatives – on a political, cultural and existential level. 
personal program

What Is to Be Done? (A Journey from Prague to Český Krumlov, or How I Formed a New Government)

Karel Vachek
Czech Republic / 1996 / 215 min.
section: Vachek 80
Who Will Watch the Watchman? Dalibor, or the Key to Uncle Tom's Cabin
The most characteristic theme of the film, whose actors are symbolically “imprisoned” in the space of Prague’s National Theatre, is that of subversive battles launched against any sort of establishment (in politics, scholarship, and culture) and the rules or “laws” that frequently work against them—rules that, of course, also offer a moral justification for battle. Vachek, in this film, is interested in figures who engage in these kinds of battles, a majority of whom have already suffered some kind of setback.
personal program

Who Will Watch the Watchman? Dalibor, or the Key to Uncle Tom's Cabin

Karel Vachek
2002 / 220 min.
section: Vachek 80
Záviš, the Prince of Pornofolk Under the Influence of Griffith’s Intolerance and Tati’s Mr. Hulot’s Holiday or The Foundation and Doom of Czechoslovakia
A dog’s funeral becomes part of a chain of absurd events including a tomato ketchup battle, a reconstruction of the battle of Austerlitz and a motorbike show. Its common denominator is the commercial interest of sponsors and big buisness, the ambivalent winners of privatization and participants of numerous coruption affairs. Vachek debates corruption and environmental disaster, but insists that there is an alternative. Against the mass of „pseudoevents“ is the independent techno-party CzechTekk, raided by the police despite the fact that it was entirely law-abiding, whose participants are Vachek believes to be the new „unionists“.
personal program

Záviš, the Prince of Pornofolk Under the Influence of Griffith’s Intolerance and Tati’s Mr. Hulot’s Holiday or The Foundation and Doom of Czechoslovakia

Karel Vachek
Czech Republic / 2006 / 147 min.
section: Vachek 80
Zlatá šedesátá: Karel Vachek
Television series The Golden Sixties examines new insights into Czech and Slovak cinema of the 1960s and the role of the Czechoslovak New Wave. This episode focuses on one of the most distinctive directors, Karel Vachek.
personal program

Zlatá šedesátá: Karel Vachek

Martin Šulík
Czech Republic / 2009 / 57 min.
section: Vachek 80
Ministerstvo kultury
Fond kinematografie
Creative Europe
Město Jihlava
Kraj Vysočina
Česká televize
Český rozhlas
Aktuálně.cz
Respekt