KCET started this adventure 50 years ago and we've been laughing, crying and exploring with you all along the way. Now that calls for a celebration! Join us as we take a look back at 50 fabulous years of KCET.
The three-part drama, directed by the Polish director Agnieszka Holland, returns to a pivotal time in modern Czech history that has been ignored in Czech cinema until now. The film begins with a reconstruction of the shocking act of a Czech university student, who in protest of the Soviet occupation of Czechoslovakia, set himself on fire in Prague’s Wenceslas Square on January 16, 1969, and died four days later.
Through the story of the brave defense attorney Dagmar Burešová, who defended Palach’s legacy in a doomed lawsuit, the film examines the transformations taking place in Czechoslovak society after the invasion of the armies of the Warsaw Pact in August of 1968 and the installation of a hardline Communist government. It depicts the beginnings of Czech and Slovak resistance against the occupation, which reached its apex with the mass protests during Palach’s funeral. It also shows the nation’s gradual resignation under the pressure of fear and harsher persecution.
In some corners of the planet, life is no laughing matter. But a new wave of international stand-up comedians suggests that laughing matters now more than ever. Can the universal power of comedy change the global conversation about poverty?