Shot in 1968, whilst Czechoslovakia enjoyed a brief moment of political liberalisation, Larks on a String is a searing political satire from director Jiří Menzel and writer Bohumil Hrabal. Like their earlier Oscar-winning triumph Closely Observed Trains, it audaciously combines black humour with grim reality. Set in a scrap metal yard where dissidents are interned to be ‘re-educated’, the film is both a powerful critique of totalitarianism and a celebration of the resilience of the human spirit.
Promptly banned by the Communist regime, the film remained unseen until 1990, when it was released to great acclaim, winning the grand prize at the Berlin Film Festival. Now regarded as a rediscovered masterpiece, Menzel's wry comic drama is a hymn to humanity and nonconformity.
Larks on a String is presented from a glorious new 4K restoration and makes its world premiere on Blu-ray.
Blu-ray Special features:
• Larks on a String (Skřivánci na niti, 1969) presented from an HD transfer of the new 4K restoration by the Czech National Film Archive.
• Jiří Menzel: 7 Questions: an idiosyncratic reflection on the film and its history, shot by the late director in 2011 specially for Second Run.
• Menzel in discussion with filmmaker Shivendra Singh Dungarpur.
• A newly-recorded Projection Booth audio commentary with Mike White and Jonathan Owen.
• Our Dear Mister Foerster Died (1963): a restored early short film by Jiří Menzel.
• 20-page booklet featuring an essay by author Peter Hames and an introduction by cinematographer Jaromír Šofr.
• New and improved English subtitle translation.
• World premiere on Blu-ray.