The Wolf from Royal Vineyard Street

Direction
Year 
2016
Country
  • Czech Republic 
  • Slovakia 
Duration
68min 
Audio Tracks 
Subtitles 

“Our life zips by faster than our recollections of it,” stated internationally celebrated Czech director Jan Němec (1936-2016). One of the country’s few home-grown filmmakers, here he loosely adapted his final film from his own collection of quasi-autobiographical tales. The result is a dejected comedy, an unsentimental reminiscence of a life story spanning the Sixties to the present, and a nonchalant settling of scores in punk regalia. We join the director’s alter ego John Jan at Cannes during the festival’s controversial 1968 edition and, not long after, we find ourselves in the Czech capital that same summer, now a city besieged by Soviet tanks. Exile, the return to Prague, the burial of communism, freedom. As Němec noted himself, “the film has ‘wolf’ in its title, a feral, cunning, uncontrollable creature. A wolf in sheep’s clothing and vice versa. You’ll see where it all happened, you’ll get the authentic dialogues, the original commentaries, genuine archive footage, and fake stuff as well. Everything in the film really did happen, and John Jan really experienced it. Although, it has to be said, he occasionally inflated things a little.” KVIFF

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