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Učitel’ka

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International title The Teacher
Section 54 edición - S.O. Largometrajes
Country República Checa, Eslovaquia
Year 2016
Running time 102 min.
Original language Eslovaco
Director Jan Hřebejk
Screenplay Petr Jarchovský
Film Editing Vladimír Barák
Photography Martin Žiaran
Music Michal Novinski
Art direction Juraj Fábry
Costume Katarina Bielikova
Production Tibor Búza, Zuzana Mistríková, L’ubica Orechovská
Cast Zuzana Mauréry, Csongor Kassai, Zuzana Konečná, Tamara Fischer, Martin Havelka
Producer PubRes
Distribution Company Karma films
Synopsis Maria Drazdechova (Zuzana Mauréry) is the new teacher who has just arrived in an urban school in Bratislava. Her openly abusive and corrupt behaviour makes one of her students try to commit suicide, as well as causing the outrage of the parents and schoolmates. So much so that the director of the school offers the parents the possibility of signing an official petition requesting her transfer. There’s only one problem. We are in 1983 and Maria Drazdechova is a loyal communist with contacts in the hierarchy of the party. Parents are then faced with a dilemma: they either risk draw attention to themselves, hence putting their position at risk, or they let the teacher keep on creating her own kingdom of fear. Jan Hřebejk, veteran film and TV director in the former Czechoslovakia, directs with the pace of a thriller a moral tale full of acid and black humour, sometimes on the brink of Kafkaesque absurd, which goes beyond its time period to present an always pertinent question: choosing between what’s right and what’s dangerous… what’s comfortable and what’s corrupt. Award to the best actresss for Zuzana Mauréry at Karlovy Vary.
Director bio

Born in Prague in 1967, Jan Hřebejk is one of the most prolific Czech directors both in films and in theatre. His first film, Big Beat (1993) won the prizes to the best film and best director from the Czech Academy and some of his later films have been very successful in his country. He was nominated to the Oscar® by Divided We Fall (2000) and he’s a regular in the competitive section in Karlovy Vary, where he has won several awards.