Four Czech documentaries are part of DOK.fest München (May 4-15, Munich / May 9-22, home): Intensive Life Unit (dir. Adéla Komrzý, CZ, 2021), Kapr Code (dir. Lucie Králová, CZ, SK, 2022), René: The Prisoner of Freedom (dir. Helena Třeštíková, CZ, 2021) and At Full Throttle (dir. Miro Remo, SK, CZ, 2021).
Intensive Life Unit (dir. Adéla Komrzý, CZ, 2021) - East Doc Platform, East Silver Caravan
Doctors Ondřej and Kateřina often touch on the intangible in their work. In this feature-length documentary, the pioneers of Czech hospital palliative care discuss topics that have essentially disappeared from our lives. Against an environment of robotic medicine and deified white coats, focusing on the disease itself, the human being returns to the centre of their attention. In an intimate conversations, doctors and their patients look for answers to a question that has, unfortunately, been forgotten in hospitals where life ends for 60 to 70% of Czech society: “How does one live a quality life with an illness?”
Kapr Code (dir. Lucie Králová, CZ, SK, 2022)
A Documentary Opera featuring the contradictory life of progressive composer and prominent communist Jan Kapr (1914-88), Stalin award laureate, later banned in socialist Czechoslovakia. While Kapr's life escalates towards pivotal moments, we follow opera songs reflecting these crucial life junctures, those establishing an artist’s fate. The film explores the nature of memory, and narration, using Kapr's personal, never before seen amateur films manifesting his humor, inner struggles and desire to leave traces for eternity.
René: The Prisoner of Freedom (dir. Helena Třeštíková, CZ, 2021)
René, a known delinquent, is now free after many years and wants to live an honest life. Meanwhile, a documentary, which has screened throughout the Czech Republic, has made him a familiar figure who has now captured the interest of the media as well as women. This (ir)redeemable character has retained his main traits: he is contemplative, highly intelligent and creative. At the same time, he continues to struggle with existential issues, goes from one temporary job to another, stays at friends’ and partners’ places or cheap dormitories, and finds himself in prison once again. How will René handle the new challenges? Will the attempt to reconnect with his alleged son work? And will René ever escape the vicious circle of crime and imprisonment?
At Full Throttle (dir. Miro Remo, SK, CZ, 2021) - East Doc Platform, East Silver
Slovak Jitka and Czech Jaroslav, a couple in their 50s, are the protagonists of our documentary. Jitka is the oldest autocross rider and Jaroslav, her former classmate from elementary school, takes care of her car. Both are members of the DRAKKAR motorcycle association and the story follows their attempt to defend the title of the Carpathian Autocross Cup. But even more important is their relationship, which is actually a renewal of their childhood love, they have come back to from their lives trapped in dead ends and series of wrong decisions. With a desire to live, they fight today in a team, both on autocross tracks and beyond it. Change and courage can make difference and "correct" the life.