Journey: Portrait of Vera Chytilova

At 74, iconoclastic director Vera Chytilova, a leading light of the '60s Czech New Wave, remains outspoken, continuing to do work that questions authority and breaks filmic barriers. A compact, intimate profile, "Journey" will be well-received wherever helmer bios are shown, with some tube opportunities and educational shelf life

At 74, iconoclastic director Vera Chytilova (“Daisies,” “Apple Game”), a leading light of the ’60s Czech New Wave, remains outspoken, continuing to do work that questions authority and breaks filmic barriers. A compact, intimate profile, “Journey” will be well-received wherever helmer bios are shown, with some tube opportunities and educational shelf life.

“I was daring enough to want to do what I wanted, even if it was a mistake,” says Chytilova of a career that has placed her, at various times, in hot water with Communist-era censors and/or the public. Pic observes still-feisty director puttering around the kitchen, rearranging her numerous awards and reflecting on the poor reception of her most recent feature, 2001’s “Banned from Paradise.” (In fact, her films since around 1990 have failed to spark interest commensurate with her early work.) Frustratingly, extracts are identified only during end credits, and no mention is made of her post-Velvet Revolution cult fave, “The Inheritance.” Tech package mixes hand-held contempo footage with vintage home-movie footage and photos of family that include former husband, d.p. Jaroslav Kucera. Helmer Jasmina Blazevic, a TV documaker, also teaches directing at Prague’s FAMU film academy.

Journey: Portrait of Vera Chytilova

Czech Republic

Production: A Negativ production. (International sales: Negativ, Prague.) Produced by Katerina Cerna. Directed, written by Jasmina Blazevic.

Crew: Camera (color, DigiBeta), Stepan Kucera; editor, Jakub Voves; music, Petr Hromadka. Reviewed at Karlovy Vary Film Festival (Special Video Screenings), July 5, 2004. Running time: 52 MIN.

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