Julio, aged nineteen, has just left the provinces to settle down in the outskirts of Lisbon. He lives there in a poor area with his uncle Afonso and starts working as an apprentice ... See full summary »
The House of the Angel focuses on the ruling class in 1920s Argentina, a deeply repressive society where political arguments were often settled by duels, and young women were expected to be totally ignorant of sex.
Mána is a young secretary. One evening she and her roommate accompany two wealthy older gentlemen to dinner. After one of them offers money to her she realizes his intentions and flees from... See full summary »
Ladislav H. Struna,
The movie is a week in the life of a poor family, a mother, father and adult daughter, and their neighbors around their tenement their grinding misery. It certainly pulls no punches when it comes to portraying their woebegone prospects, their lack of thought and minor and major disasters. It's very effective.
What I am uncertain of is how much of it is art and how much is the necessity of a new film-making industry working on the cheap. I have seen two Czech silents, both in the last week, and their have been similar in their subject matter. Was this an artistic choice, based on the assumption that their audience was poor and would appreciate people like them on the screen? Did they feel that the Austrian, Hungarian, German & American films available locally ate up the high end of the market? These movies were preserved in the 1950s. Was the choice of what movies to preserve constrained by the fact that Czechoslovakia was a Warsaw Pact nation, and showing how miserable the lumpen-proletariat was before everyone became a good communist was a deciding factor? With a sample of two films, I certainly can't tell.
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