Sticking around the Czech Republic this summer? Or just looking for movies to watch during those long summer evenings? Check out our list of the five best Czech cult movies currently on Netflix!
Kolya (Czech: Kolja)
Starting with the critically acclaimed classics, Kolja, a winner of the 1997 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, is one of the most popular Czech movies especially for foreign audiences.
The 1996 Czech drama follows an old bachelor, Louka, whose life gets turned upside down when he has to unexpectedly take care of a five-year old Russian boy, Kolja.
Louka is a dissatisfied concert cellist, who has lost his job at the Czech Philharmonic orchestra and now plays at funerals at the Prague crematorium. When his friend suggest that he could make some extra money by marrying a Soviet woman that wants to stay in the Czechoslovakia, he agrees but things do not go as planned. The woman uses the new citizenship to emigrate to West Germany but is forced to leave behind her five-year old son behind. Louka grudgingly agrees to take care of the child.
Taking place against the backdrop of the final years of the communist rule, the movie centers around the relationship between Kolja and Louka as they gradually form a bond despite communication issues and Louka’s grumpy nature.
Cosy Dens (Czech: Pelíšky)
Traditionally aired on the Czech Television on Christmas eve, Pelíšky is one of the most popular Czech movies. Directed by Jan Hřebejk, this 1999 coming-of-age story takes place in the Prague residential district Hanspaulka in the months leading up to the Prague Spring.
The movie depicts the lives of ordinary Czech families and deals with issues like intergenerational conflict, the fascination of the young generation with the West, and the struggles of teenage love. The mosaic storytelling follows individual stories that eventually coalesce in the face of the Soviet invasion, portraying the hopes of three different family generations that were crushed by Soviet tanks.
Many scenes from the film have become instant classics, becoming a staple of nearly every Czech’s dictionary. In one of the scenes a proud communist father shows his family the latest invention of socialist scientists from Eastern Germany – plastic spoons.
As the family puts the plastic cutlery into their coffee, the plastic melts in the heat of the beverage, making for one of the best-known quotes: “I wonder where the comrades from GDR made a mistake.”
This article was shared as part of our Media Partnership with Kafkadesk.org, to read the full list on their website please click here