Millenium Story adds to a prolific year in Czech cinema

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The world of Czech cinema has experienced a prolific year. The new Czech film, "Zacatek Sveta", or "The Beginning of the World", is to premiere in Prague this Wednesday evening, and will be playing soon throughout the Czech Republic with English subtitles. The film centers around the Moravian town of Telc and depicts the story of small-town millenium fever. Pavla Navratilova has this report:

Unlike in Hollywood, the Czech film industry has a considerably more limited budget for new films. This year, however, a large number of Czech films have been produced. A new feature film is due to start this week which was completed on a very low budget, even by Czech standards; and it portrays unique episodes in the life of a small town in the Czech Republic.

"Zacatek Sveta", or "The Beginning of the World", presents three interactive stories depicting important millenium cornerstones in 1999. Rightly or wrongly, it was celebrated as the final year of the 20th century, and many themes popped up to suggest the end of the world. Dan Svatek, one of film's three directors, stressed the importance of not seeing this arbitrary moment in time as an end, but rather as a beginning, when we can start to treat the world, and the people around us better. I asked Mr. Svatek to tell me more about the film:

Although the film was produced with such a limited budget that there was not enough money to pay some of the actors, the result is a beautiful portrayal of small town celebrations and fears at the start of the 21st century.

Author: Pavla Navrátilová
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