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Intimate Lighting

Intimní osvětlení
Directed by: Ivan Passer
Czechoslovakia 196575' cs

A group of small-town musicians are preparing to play Dvořák’s concert for cello and orchestra. A long-unseen friend of the director of the local music school has agreed to play the solo. Middle-aged and disappointed in life, the two men’s reunion develops into an intention to flee… Until Sunday morning arrives as stiff as the thick eggnog that won’t drain into your mouth—but just have ‘a little patience, and it will be good’.

This melancholic comedy is an insightful and ironically poetic observation. Passer himself has said that the Czechoslovak cinema of the time was ‘a statement of the fact that as individuals and as a society, we are in a state of permanent crisis’. This was his first feature film. Miloš Forman persuaded Passer to give his wife, Vera Křesadlová, the role of Štěpa, whereas Passer himself enlisted music instructor Karel Blažek, who was reluctant at first, for the lead. Sadly, Blažek died of leukemia soon after filming.

Foreword by the programme curator: The characters are viewed under subtle, intimate magnification – as in great prose. Has a French new wave influence.