Old-Timers voted the best Czech film of 2019 by domestic critics
- The revenge road-dramedy has won three awards, while the chamber comedy Owners followed close behind
The Czech film critics gathered for their tenth annual awards ceremony on 1 February in order to celebrate the best domestic movies of 2019. The Czech Film Critics’ Awards had two front-runners, based on the number of nominations they had notched up: the revenge road-dramedy Old-Timers [+see also:
interview: Martin Dušek, Ondřej Provaz…
film profile] (co-directed by Ondřej Provazník and Martin Dušek), about two World War II veterans pursuing a very cold and arthritic vendetta against a former communist prosecutor; and a literal chamber comedy that occasionally looks like a hostage drama, Owners [+see also:
film profile] (the feature-length directorial outing by actor and theatre director Jiří Havelka), which sees a society of flat co-owners failing to agree on a single item on their agenda. Both films had five chances to net an award, while the adaptation of the controversial Jerzy Kosinski novel The Painted Bird [+see also:
interview: Václav Marhoul
film profile] (directed by Václav Marhoul) received four nominations.
Old-Timers was named Best Film of 2019, while the directorial tandem took home the Best Director Award, and one of the leading actors, Jiří Schmitzer, was hailed as Best Actor. Owners, on the other hand, won the Best Screenplay accolade for writer-director Jiří Havelka, while Tereza Ramba netted the Best Actress gong for her turn as the overeager and slightly neurotic chairwoman of the co-owners’ association. The Czech film critics singled out Martin Mareček’s intimate road documentary Over the Hills [+see also:
interview: Martin Mareček
film profile] as the Best Documentary of the previous year, preferring it over Artemio Benki’s portrait of Martin Perano, Solo [+see also:
interview: Artemio Benki
film profile], and the 335-minute-long cinematic essay by Karel Vachek, Communism and the Net or the End of Representative Democracy [+see also:
film profile]. The Award for Best Audiovisual Achievement was handed to Vladimír Smutný for his work lensing The Painted Bird, which was also honoured at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival.
The first feature-length outing by writer-director Bohdan Karásek (who has so far mostly worked on the fringes of Czech cinema, making amateur and experimental films), Karel, Me and You, the self-described “first Czech mumblecore” starring the director himself, was picked as Discovery of the Year. Meanwhile, FAMU student Daria Kashcheeva has been netting accolades all over the world for her short film The Daughter, including, most recently, the Award for Best Short Film at Sundance. The movie is also nominated for the Oscar for Best Short Film (Animated), and the domestic film critics added one more trophy to Kashcheeva’s bulging cabinet: the Beyond Cinema Award.
To celebrate having enjoyed 30 years of free, post-revolution, cinema, the Czech film critics voted for the top ten movies of the last three decades, with Jan Svěrák’s 1996 drama Kolja (starring the director’s father, Zdeněk Svěrák, in the leading role, and which won the Academy Award for Best Foreign-language Film and the Golden Globe for Best Foreign-language Film) coming in in the top spot. Second and third place went, respectively, to Tomáš Vorel’s Smoke (1991, Czechoslovakia) and Věra Chytilová’s The Inheritance or Fuckoffguysgoodday (1992, Czechoslovakia).
Here is the complete list of winners at the Czech Film Critics’ Awards:
Ondřej Provazník and Martin Dušek – Old-Timers
Tereza Ramba - Owners
Jiří Schmitzer - Old-Timers
Innogy Award for Discovery of the Year
Bohdan Karásek – Karel, Me and You (Czech Republic)
Beyond Cinema Award
The Daughter – Daria Kashcheeva (Czech Republic)
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