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Věra Chytilová’s debut feature intercuts between the stories of a gymnast and a housewife; while both women are in their prime, the worlds they inhabit tell them otherwise. The gymnast goes through backbreaking training to prepare for her final competition before retirement. The young housewife is married to an indifferent husband and lives a monotonous routine taking care of a young child. The former is documentary and the latter is fiction—and both shine as authentic, detailed observations of women trying to live life to the fullest. A key figure of the Czechoslovak New Wave, Chytilová is celebrated for her formal innovation and subversive wit, as exemplified by her best-known work, Daisies (1966), an experimental comedy about two women wreaking havoc everywhere they go.
Organized by La Frances Hui, Associate Curator, Department of Film.