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Choking Hazard

Sudden Czech interest in genre filmmaking is led by mischievous widescreen indie gorefest "Choking Hazard," which alternates yuks with yucks. Late-night Tribeca fest slots will be first of many such invites for this one-of-a-kind item, before it merrily staggers through regional theatrical playdates to undead shelf life.

With:
With: Jaroslav Dusek, Jan Dolansky, Anna Fialkova, Kamil Svejda, Eva Janouskova, Eva Nadazdyova, Roman "Izzi" Izaias.

Sudden Czech interest in genre filmmaking is led by mischievous widescreen indie gorefest “Choking Hazard,” which alternates yuks with yucks. Late-night Tribeca fest slots will be first of many such invites for this one-of-a-kind item, before it merrily staggers through regional theatrical playdates to undead shelf life.

Disciples gathered to spend the weekend with philosophizing blind self-help guru Dr. Reinis (Jaroslav Dusek) at the remote hotel Halali (“there’s no other remote hotel around,” a cabbie explains helpfully) are set upon by hordes of roving zombie gamekeepers, the Czech version of U.S. park rangers. Plucky survivalists include happy-go-lucky Verner (Dave Grohl lookalike Jan Dolansky), love interest Hanusova (Eva Nadazdyova), religious porn director Mechura (Roman “Izzi” Izaias), pro screamer Krenovcova (Eva Janouskova), foul-tempered Lefnerova (Anna Fialkova) and prissy Nedobyl (Kamil Svejda), who worries zombies will chomp on his expensive leather jacket. Highlights include the doc’s black-screen “death” scene (“this isn’t how a philosopher should die!”) and a zombie electrocution that morphs into an impromptu breakdancing competition. Helmer Marek Dobes keeps cheeky fun at the fore, with buckets of raspberry-hued gore fleshing out odd rhythms of double-take comedy.

Choking Hazard

Czech Republic

Production: A Bontonfilm release (in the Czech Republic) of a Brutto production. Produced by Marek Dobes, Narek Oganesjan. Directed by Marek Dobes. Screenplay, Stepan Kopriva.

Crew: Camera (color, HDCam-to-35mm, widescreen), Martin Preiss; editor, Michal Hyka; music, Frantisek Fuka, Daniel Krob; production designer, Katerina Koutska. Reviewed at Finale Pilsen Film Festival (Special Screenings), Czech Republic, April 3, 2004. (Also in Tribeca Film Festival.) Running time: 83 MIN.

With: With: Jaroslav Dusek, Jan Dolansky, Anna Fialkova, Kamil Svejda, Eva Janouskova, Eva Nadazdyova, Roman "Izzi" Izaias.

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