9th Czech and Slovak Film Festival “Únik”
9th Czech and Slovak Film Festival “Únik”

Escape through film from October 7-16, Online

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA, September 20, 2021 – The Czech & Slovak Film Festival of Australia (CaSFFA), is proud to announce its 9th annual installment themed, “Únik” which translates to “escapism.” CaSFFA will be staged as an online offering through ACMI Cinema 3 and be available 24/7 from October 7-16 Australia-wide, allowing our fans across the land the opportunity to escape through film.

CaSFFA Artistic Director, Eleanor Colla, said of the festival, “We chose the theme “Únik” to reflect our audience’s desire to have a break or escape, even momentarily, from challenging restrictions over the past two years. This year’s selection offers this opportunity through some truly captivating and visually spectacular films.” Considering the amazing success of last year’s festival which was held online and as a reduced offering at a Drive-In cinema, CaSFFA President, Marcel Mihulka and his team decided to keep the festival flexible again in 2021. “As Melburnians and Canberrans get vaccinated, diligently wear masks and socially distance, the cities are doing all they can to open and this is providing optimism. All cinemas will soon reopen and we are looking forward to having that cinema experience again but for those that cannot get to the cinema, or aren’t quite comfortable being in public yet our online offering ensures everyone can have the chance to escape through film.”

The 2021 Online program includes five feature films and no film may capture this year’s theme better than FREM. Viera Čákanyová shot the film in Antarctica whilst filming White on White/ Biela Na Bielej, 2020, FREM presents a unique perspective of Antarctica. A collage of overhead shots from a drone, extreme close-ups, and skittish images, a film audiences may find both comforting and confronting.

CaSFFA will also screen the compelling and playful documentary Athanor: The Alchemical Furnace on the work and life of Jan Švankmajer. Filmed over a number of years, and utilising many Švankmajer-en techniques itself, the documentary takes us into the past and present life of a master of cinema.

The recently released Gump/ Gump – Pes, Který Naucil Lidi Zít is the latest from well-renowned cinematographer and director F. A. Brabec. A poignant reflection on life through the eyes of a dog travelling through life with a cast including acting greats Bolek Polívka, Eva Holubová, and Ivan Trojan.

From the archives, CaSFFA presents The Ear/ Ucho (Karel Kachyňa, 1970). A chilling study of fear, paranoia, and the power of the State, Kachyňa’s portrayal of one night in Prague resonated with the Soviet authorities, so much so that it was banned for 20 years. CaSFFA are able to bring this digitally restored version to you via the National Film Archive in Prague. From The Slovak Film Archive, CaSFFA will also screen the comedy Pacho, the Theif of Hybe / Pacho, Hybský Zbojník (Martin Ťapák 1976) by renown Slovak director- and much more besides- Martin Ťapák, based on the tales of Slovak national hero Jánosík, King of Thieves, is a comedic jaunt of political satire set to jaunty music. Jozef Kroner was celebrated for his role as Pacho and the supporting cast play up their characters well.

This full program will be available on the festival website https://casffa.com.au/ and access to streams can be purchased from the 1st October at https://www.acmi.net.au/whats-on/czech-slovak-film-festival-of-australia-2021-casffa/ .

CaSFFA’s list of sponsors and partners for 2021 includes The Foreigner Brewing Company, Sense Creative Advertising, Mr Moto, Becherovka, Josef Chromy Wines, Mattoni & Magnesia Mineral Water, Gourmet Czech, The Embassy of the Czech Republic in Canberra, The Embassy of the Slovak Republic in Canberra, Consulate General of the Czech Republic, Slovak Audio Visual Fund, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic, Domov House and Gallery, Czech Centres, Arina Film Production, Office of Slovak’s Living Abroad, Slovak Film Institute, CSFFWA, Aussie & Kiwi Film Fest, SBS Slovak and Vodafest.

As change seems the only constant in 2021, CaSFFA recommends that you stay in touch through their website, social channels or by subscribing to their newsletter to keep up with any developments and changes.
For more information about the festival visit: https://casffa.com.au/
For CaSFFA press inquiries and interview requests, please contact Vera Morgan at vera@casffa.com.au

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