“The City of the Sun,” helmer Martin Sulik’s tale of laid-off workers who go into business for themselves, won the grand prize at the Finale Pilsenfilm fest on Sunday.
Jury chairman Zdenek Tyc, one of the nation’s first post-Velvet Revolution rebel helmers, bemoaned too many local films “going the way of Hollywood.”
“Czech Dream,” a comic lampooning runaway consumerism, scored a special prize. Debut helmers Vit Klusak and Filip Remunda offer a pointed study of how the media manipulates the masses.
Fest saw more premieres than expected, considering the anemic state of Czech state film funding and a tax bill, aimed at placing the burden on exhibs, distribs and networks, stuck in parliament. Some 25 features were in competition, a vast increase from last year’s 11.