An excerpt from the booklet by Shivendra Singh Dungarpur

I watched Jiří Menzel’s debut film Closely Observed Trains when I was a film student. I couldn’t believe that a film could be so light yet so layered. It left a deep impression. It was my dream to meet the man who made this film one day.

Years later, I realized my dream. After chasing Jiri for over a year, he finally agreed to meet me in a café in Prague in 2010. When I met him that first time, he still seemed unconvinced that an Indian filmmaker had travelled all the way just to talk with him about filmmaking. Neither of us realized that this was the beginning of an odyssey that would last eight years and end in an epic film on the Czech New Wave.

During that first conversation, Jiří mentioned so many other filmmakers and artists from the era of the Golden ‘60s, many whose names I had never heard or whose films I hadn’t seen. I was hooked and I went back to Prague time and again not just to meet Jiri but to follow a path that became my personal yellow brick road to discovering the fascinating world of the Czechoslovak New Wave.

Every artist opened the door to another and I would have been happy to continue endlessly on this journey of discovery that took me from the Czech Republic to Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, France, Croatia, Bosnia, London and Hollywood where I had the privilege of interviewing some great masters like Ken Loach, Woody Allen, Andrzej Wajda, Raoul Coutard, István Szabó, Emir Kusturica and Miklós Jancsó.

It was a challenging, often frustrating task to capture their stories: it took three years and a ruse to convince Jan Němec to give an interview; I had to chase actor Josef Somr to a village three hundred kilometres from Prague and he still refused to speak to me; I drove five hours one way to Bratislava only to have Dušan Hanák refuse to open the door, forcing me to try again a year later. But in the end I got them all.


Shivendra Singh Dungarpur's complete diary extracts, from which this excerpt is taken, appear in the booklet which accompanies the release.

Disc Info

India, 2018
Main feature: 448 mins
Special features: 23 minutes
Sound: 5.1 DTS-HD Master
Colour / Black and white
Original aspect ratio: 1.78:1
Language: French
Subtitles: English

Blu-ray: BD50 x 2 / 1080 / 24fps Region ABC (Region Free)

Blu-Ray: £24.99
Release Date: 13 July 2020


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