Wednesday 30.10.2019 – 19:30
PSYCHOLOGICAL,TRAGICOMEDY RUN TIME: 97 PRODUCTION YEAR: 1968 DIRECTOR: JURAJ HERZ SCREENPLAY: LADISLAV FUKS, JURAJ HERZ
Prague at the end of the nineteen-thirties. Mr Kopfrkingl works in a crematorium. He is happily married and has two children – Zina and Milivoj. He looks after his family carefully and is conscientious in his job. He has a number of friends in the Society of Friends of Cremation and meets them at evening parties. One of them is the fascist Walter Reinke, who publicly rejoices at the annexation of Austria to the Greater German Reich. He tries to persuade Kopfrkingl that he too has German blood in his veins, and Walter’s Nazi propaganda begins to make an impression on a man whose psychological state is affected by the constant presence of death in his life. Kopfrkingl becomes a member of the Nazi party, takes an active part in persecuting Jews and informs on his colleagues and friends to the Gestapo. One day Walter reminds him that his mother-in-law had been of non-Aryan origin and this could present an obstacle to Kopfrkingl’s future career. Kopfrkingl therefore hangs his wife, with perverted tenderness. When Walter points out that his children also have Jewish blood, he resolves to kill them as well. He brutally slaughters Milivoj, but Zina manages to escape. Thus purefied, Koprfingl accepts an opportunity to join in preparations for mass cremations. He believes that in this way he will contribute to the salvation of the world.