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Charlatan

Šarlatán
Directed by: Agnieszka Holland
CZ/IE/PL/SK 2020118' cs

Mikolášek, a Czech healer and medicinal plant expert, has spent years saving countless people. At the same time, he fights his demons that gnaw at his conscience and sow misery. Every day patients wait in line at his clinic, and as eras pass, his unusual abilities are appreciated by both Nazi and communist authorities. However, after WWII, this mysterious man is too famous, wealthy and independent for the regime to tolerate  for long.

A historical drama that explores and interprets the complex destiny and personality of Jan Mikolášek (1889–1973): ‘I only do what nature allows me and what God allows nature’. Yet he cannot bear helplessness and everything that is not in line with his image as a man who is respectable and untouchable. When facing death, there is nothing unusual in cowardice, betrayal, and wickedness rearing their heads… The strong emotions evoked by this film can only be tempered by the realization that one must deal with one’s death throughout life.



Foreword by the programme curator: An empathetic love story of Soviet queers, made by a master of Eastern European socio-political cinema.