DVD: A Blonde in Love | Film reviews, news & interviews
DVD: A Blonde in Love
Miloš Forman’s Czech New Wave classic comes up fresh in a welcome reissue
Miloš Forman’s second feature, from 1965, catches the absurd atmosphere of the director’s native Czechoslovakia with both quiet desperation and raw tenderness. Heroine Andula (Hana Brejchová) works in a shoe factory in a town where women outnumber men by 16 times – until it is announced that an army division is to be relocated there, to the excitement of the local girls. But it turns out they are reservists and considerably older and plumper than expected. Forman excels himself in the dance-party sequence which shows the clumsiness and vulnerability of both the would-be seducers and their targets.
The comedy quickly changes mood as Andula catches the eye of band pianist Milda (Vladimir Pucholt) and vanishes with him (their nude scenes were seen as forward for the time). They may have been just strangers passing in the night, but it’s enough to break up Andula’s relationship with her boyfriend, and even send her off on an uneasy final trip to Prague to track down Milda, which sees her caught up in his family environment far more than she could have expected.
Forman cast non-professional actors in most roles, and the result has a remarkable naturalness, while cinematographer Miroslav Ondříček’s work has an immaculate black-and-white crispness that looks absolutely fresh in this restored print. The tender humanism of Forman’s story, and affection for his characters who seem not to have much going for them, unsurprisingly caught the attention of emerging British director Ken Loach, who has regularly cited A Blonde in Love as his favourite film.
Watch a clip from A Blonde in Love
theartsdesk is changing
Thank you for continuing to read our work on theartsdesk.com. In September we reached our fourth birthday and feel that the time is now right, in line with other media outlets, to start asking our regular readers for a contribution to help us develop the site further. Theartsdesk has therefore moved to a partial subscription model. For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 7,000 pieces, we're asking for £2.95 per month or £25 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.
Take an annual subscription now simply click here.
Five decades on, British film adaptation of 'The Turn of the Screw' still has the power to unsettle
Memorable marriage drama set within Tel Aviv Hasidic community
Giuseppe Tornatore's homage to cinema is more sweet than bitter 25 years on
Disturbing account of Indonesia’s normalisation of the aberrant, corrupt and depraved
The Great Beauty and the great Deneuve win, but Europe's showpiece film awards fizzle meekly
Dismal Danish gross-out road-trip comedy pushes familiar buttons
Tarantino-approved Israeli crime-comedy combines ultra-violence with home truths
Welles' weirdest film is a fascinating failure
Allen Ginsberg stars in Harry Potter and the Frotting Frats
theartsdesk recommends the half-dozen top movies out now
A superb retrospective of New Hollywood cinema strikes a chord with today's disenchanted youth
Alexander Payne strikes gold with a story about a man who doesn't