As most of our readers must be well aware by now given the amount of media attention it is generating, it is 40 years since May 68 and to do our bit to mark that most tumultuous of years we have turned our attention to Czech cinema and the Prague Spring. We also have reviews of four key 1960s Czech films: Jan Nemec’s subversive satire of authoritarian rule The Party and the Guests, the formidably creepy nightmare that is The Cremator, the sumptuous and brutal epic Marketa Lazarova and Romeo, Juliet and Darkness, a melancholy love story under German occupation.
New cinema releases include Barbet Schroeder’s Terror’s Advocate, which probes the complex personality of France’s most controversial lawyer, defender of both resistance fighters and war criminals, American backwater revenge tale Shotgun Stories, slick CGI animÃ© Vexille, wonderful Argentine silent fantasy La Antena, and intelligent French drama Heartbeat Detector, which draws parallels between Nazi terminology and modern-day business. In the DVD releases we review Chris Petit’s haunting British road movie Radio On(our rock ‘n’ roll movie of the month by virtue of its great soundtrack) and the jaw-dropping, must-see-to-be-believed Italian art-cum-sexploitation spectacular Femina Ridens (The Frightened Woman).
We have an interview with Xavier Mendik, organiser of the Cine-Excess festival, which explores cult cinema through a mix of academic conference and film screenings. We also preview the Fashion in Film Festival, which this year focuses on fashion and crime, and review sweet Taiwanese queer love story Spider Lilies, which showed at last month’s London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival.
In the Short Cuts section we look at some early works by FranÃƒÂ§ois Ozon, best known for features such as Swimming Pool and 8 femmes. Picking their favourite films in our Film Jukebox are The Mai 68s. We didn’t make this up, there really is a band called The Mai 68s.
The Electric Sheep Magazine team