The print version of the LA Weekly has a really neat article by Michael Atkinson about the awesome program of cult Czech movies that Cinefamily will be showing every Saturday this month and in March. Titles like Daisies and Valerie and Her Week of Wonders are now part of Hipster 101 syllabi from Williamsburg to Silver Lake, and they will be screened along less known gems like "the rarely seen, DVD-forgotten, best-Czech-movie-ever (according to a 1998 centennial poll of Czech cognoscenti) Marketa Lazarova (1967)."
The "Czech New Wave" has been enormously influential on large segments of the the folkier sounds of recent years. The magical Valerie and Her Week of Wonders even inspired a whole collective of sophisticated janglers--Greg Weeks (Espers, Grass), Margaret Wienk (Fern Knight, Eyesores), Brooke Sietinsons (Espers, Grass), Helena Espvall (Espers), Mary Lattimore, Tara Burke (Fursaxa), Jesse Sparhawk (Timesbold, Fern Knight) Jim Ayre (Fern Knight), Jessica Weeks (Woodwose, Grass), Charles Cohen--to create "The Valerie Project" album and shows.
[More info about the series (and trippy clippies!), after the jump.]
Czech Your Head / Early Saturdays in February
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Literate and witty, playful and poetic, visually evocative and tonally rich -- these are but a few of the qualities marking the wide-ranging films exported by Czechoslovakia in the '60s. At a time when our art house cinemas were dominated by Japan, France and Italy, this small country roared onto the world cinema landscape, winning awards, critical laudits and audiences' hearts. Between the chaos of WWII and the rigorous watch of Stalin, Czech cinema laid dormant for over a decade. Unfettered by the weight of an indigineous film history, but with a deep and sophisticated culture to draw upon, a generation of filmmakers explored the possibilities of cinematic storytelling in fresh and interesting ways. Czech New Wave films are rarely screened in the U.S., so it's a pleasure to share with you four of the movement's most distinct masterpieces, in gorgeous archival prints from the Czech National Film Archive.
Series co-presented by Cinespia and B-Music