Po strništi bos
Panorama | Contemporary World Cinema
Jan Svěrák (Kolya; Dark Blue World) returns with this prequel to his Oscar-nominated The Elementary School, based on the autobiographical novel written by his father and actor/screenwriter, Zdeněk. During the waning days of WWII, eight-year-old Eda (ball-of-energy Alois Grec) and his family are toughing out the German occupation of Prague until, one day, Eda says something he shouldn’t have, and the family flees to the countryside to escape the consequences. Staying with distant relatives Eda doesn’t know—and warned to stay away from his "bad" uncle, referred to as "the Wolf" (Oldřich Kaiser)—the young lad’s first experience of country life is one big adventure, despite the dire happenings going on just outside the limits of his perception. As Eda adapts, makes new friends and explores his surroundings, the barely hidden stresses and strains of extended family life start to surface—especially when Eda begins a tentative, touching friendship with "the Wolf."
But director Svěrák prefers to keep things simple and relatively sunny. Like the film it is constantly being compared to—Hope and Glory, John Boorman’s Boys’ Own adventure story about growing up in WWII London—Barefoot revels in the innocence of youth and reveals a world where every day brings new discoveries and new hopes.
"A beautiful piece of nostalgia shot entirely from a little boy’s perspective, one that never makes a misstep… An able touch of sardonic East European humour keeps things smart and light… [The film] describes the experience of war from a bold, unfamiliar perspective: through the eyes of innocents."—Deborah Young, Hollywood Reporter
Best Sound, Best Cinematography, Best Supporting Actor, Czech Lion Award 18