Evald Schorm

Evald Schorm – Kazdy den odvahu AKA Courage for Every Day (1964)

Synopsis:
“Everyday Courage” or “Courage for Every Day” is a beautifully made fllm of great poetic restraint about a young man living in Prague before the collapse of communism. It is best described as belonging to the school of realism which marked the Czech films of the sixties, and its director, Evald Schorm, was noted for his refusal to compromise the subject matter or style of his films with the regime which controlled the film studios. An admirer of the films of the British director Lindsay Anderson, “Everyday Courage” has similarities with”This Sporting Life”, its hero striving to escape the repressive forces of a society against which he rebels, but which ultimately demoralizes him and undermines his personal relationships. The winner of the International Film Festival in 1965 it has been notably neglected, and was one of the most moving and lyrical films to emerge from the Czech school. Read More »

Evald Schorm – Návrat ztraceného syna AKA The Return of the Prodigal Son (1967)

Quote:
Though he was very much a member of the community of filmmakers who graduated from FAMU and went on to shake things up during the sixties, Evald Schorm also stood apart from the rest. Like his fellow directors, he was using the medium to get at the absurdity of life in Communist Czechoslovakia, but Schorm was dedicated to a more direct, realistic type of filmmaking than his friends Věra Chytilová, Jan Němec, and Jiří Menzel, who readily turned to whimsy, fantasy, and comedy. Referred to as both the philosopher and the conscience of the New Wave, Schorm, whose relatively sober style has been called documentary-like (his focus at FAMU was nonfiction filmmaking) and received comparisons to that of Antonioni, explored themes of morality and the malaise of the socialist middle class (such income-based social strata did exist in Czechoslovakia), and preferred psychological portraiture. Read More »

Vera Chytilová, Jaromil Jires, Jiri Menzel, Jan Nemec & Evald Schorm – Perlicky na dne aka Pearls Of The Deep (1966)

Quote:
One of the defining works of the Czech New Wave was the portmanteau film Pearls from the Deep (Perlicky na dne, 1965). Not only did it bring five key directors of the Wave (Chytilova, Jires, Menzel, Nemec and Schorm) together in one film, making it the Wave’s official “coming out” as a group, but it tied them to a writer, Bohumil Hrabal, whose ability to capture the rhythms and refrains of everyday spoken Czech was highly influential on the Wave’s direction Read More »

Evald Schorm – Pet holek na krku AKA Saddled with Five Girls (1967)

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From History of Narrative Film by David A. Cook (p712):

“Schorm’s third film of contemporary social criticism, Saddled with Five Girls, forms a kind of trilogy with Everyday Courage and The Return of the Prodigal Son. Less pessimistic than his earlier work, Saddled with Five Girls is a film of youthful love and alienation which juxtaposes its narrative with scenes from Weber’s Die Freischütz.

From 50 Major Filmmakers edited by Peter Cowie (p231):

“Five Girls to Cope With, in 1967, set out to explore that critical age of adolescence when a person’s character is formed for good or evil. Schorm examined a girl’s problems of being giving too much. She tries to buy the goodwill of her less fortunate friends; her intentions are pure, but in the difficulty of communicating she learns envy and deceit, and must decide if she will submit to double dealing or steel her life against self-deception and mediocrity. In addition to the relationship between the girl and her friends, Schorm introduces a teenage romance and the broader relationship between the girl’s parents – neatly tied together with segments of Weber’s opera, Die Freischütz. He reveals himself as a skilled psychological director with a wide range of knowledge about people. Read More »