126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

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soundchaser
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126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#1 Post by soundchaser » Wed Apr 24, 2019 8:52 pm

Coming in 2019 (and presumably the next release), per Second Run's website:
Second Run Coming Soon wrote:A free-form and darkly surreal adaptation of Jonathan Swift's Gulliver's Travels, Pavel Juráček's film also channels Lewis Carroll and Franz Kafka to create one of Czecholsovak cinema's most unique and deeply disturbing works.

A man becomes lost on a country road and finds himself in an alternative, nightmare world that mirrors (then) modern-day Czechoslovakia. Needless to say the film was not warmly recieved by the authorities, and like his earlier surrealist masterwork Josef Kilián (1963), was promptly 'banned forever'.

Juráček, who had earlier co-written Věra Chytilová's Daisies, Jindřich Polák's pioneering Ikarie XB 1 and Karel Zeman's A Jester's Tale, never made another film - but his legacy is one of the most profound, invigrating and important in all Czech cinema.

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AidanKing
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Re: Forthcoming: A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#2 Post by AidanKing » Tue Apr 30, 2019 12:32 pm

I wonder whether, as Second Run is a UK label, there might be an alternative title, such as 'A Case for a Novice Hangman', that could be used.

Otherwise, am I right in thinking that this is another in the ten-best Czech films list drawn up by Czech film critics? Good news then as all the other films on the list that have been released in the UK have been excellent.

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MichaelB
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Re: Forthcoming: A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#3 Post by MichaelB » Tue Apr 30, 2019 12:50 pm

AidanKing wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 12:32 pm
I wonder whether, as Second Run is a UK label, there might be an alternative title, such as 'A Case for a Novice Hangman', that could be used.
Why? "Rookie" is perfectly acceptable British English - indeed, the earliest known written reference to the word is in a poem by Rudyard Kipling, and you can't get much more British than him! There's also nothing in my Oxford Dictionary of English that suggests that it's American (it's a diminution of the word "recruit"), and they normally flag up if a particular word is more commonly encountered on one side of the Atlantic.
Otherwise, am I right in thinking that this is another in the ten-best Czech films list drawn up by Czech film critics? Good news then as all the other films on the list that have been released in the UK have been excellent.
It did indeed come in at number nine, between the tied Closely Observed Trains/The Cremator and The Ear.

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AidanKing
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Re: Forthcoming: A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#4 Post by AidanKing » Wed May 01, 2019 3:20 am

Fair point about Kipling! I wasn't aware of his first use of the word. Might he be better seen as being specifically English rather than British (especially at this present point in British history) even as a representative of Empire? Of course, that doesn't alter the point about the acceptability of 'rookie' in the title.

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MichaelB
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Re: Forthcoming: A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#5 Post by MichaelB » Wed May 01, 2019 5:37 am

The other point is that I know from my own experience that the Czech National Film Archive prefers to standardise its English titles. A few years ago, I successfully argued that Closely Observed Trains was much too famous under that title (as both film and source novella) in the UK to make it a good idea to change it now, and I suspect that a similar argument held sway with The Shop on the High Street (the US titles being Closely Watched Trains and The Shop on Main Street), but A Case for a Rookie Hangman is pretty much unknown in the UK - I can't find any record of a commercial release.

And the other reason I sympathise with the need for standardisation is that I've encountered no fewer than three English titles for this film - A Case for the New Hangman and A Case for the Young Hangman being the others. And I'd argue that those aren't quite as close to Případ pro začínajícího kata, as "začínajícího" is derived from the verb "začít", which means "to begin". Both "young" and "new" hint at this, but are open to alternative interpretations - a new hangman might be a perfectly experienced hangman who's newly employed in that particular jurisdiction, for instance, whereas "rookie" is closest to a direct translation.

Of course, "novice" would be a perfectly decent alternative, but that would muddy the water still further by introducing a fourth version!

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AidanKing
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Re: Forthcoming: A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#6 Post by AidanKing » Wed May 01, 2019 6:56 am

I can quite understand why the Archive would want a standard English title and it all sounds like there are really good reasons for sticking with 'rookie'.

On a slightly different note, the quality within that top 10 list is astonishing (most countries' output would pale before 'Marketa Lazarova' alone, I think) so it's fantastic this is getting a release, and one from the best possible label for it!

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MichaelB
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Re: Forthcoming: A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#7 Post by MichaelB » Wed May 01, 2019 7:33 am

Once this is out, the only film on that top ten list (actually eleven thanks to a tied vote) not available in the UK will be Distant Journey - which, interestingly, is also the only film on the list not to begin production in the 1960s.

1. Marketa Lazarová (František Vláčil, 1967, 325 votes)
2. The Shop on the High Street (Obchod na korze, Jan Kadar/Elmar Klos, 1965, 252 votes)
3. All My Good Countrymen (Všichni dobří rodáci, Vojtěch Jasný, 1968, 222 votes)
4. The Firemen's Ball (Hoří, má panenko, Miloš Forman, 1967) 163
5. Intimate Lighting (Intimní osvětlení, Ivan Passer, 1965, 134 votes)
6. Distant Journey (Daleká cesta, Alfréd Radok, 1949, 122 votes)
7. Diamonds of the Night (Démanty noci, Jan Němec, 1964) tied with Closely Observed Trains (Ostře sledované vlaky, Jiří Menzel, 1966) - 121 votes each
8. The Cremator (Spalovač mrtvol, Juraj Herz, 1968, 79 votes)
9. A Case for a Rookie Hangman (Pripad pro zacinajiciho kata, Pavel Juráček, 1969, 71 votes)
10. The Ear (Ucho, Karel Kachyňa, 1970, 68 votes)

And, happily, they're all easily available in English-friendly versions, with most of them on Blu-ray.

Blu-rays

* Marketa Lazarová is out on Criterion (Region A) or the Czech National Film Archive (region-free) - same 4K restoration at source.
* The Shop on the High Street, Intimate Lighting, Diamonds of the Night, The Cremator and A Case for a Rookie Hangman are all out on Second Run.
* The Firemen's Ball and Closely Observed Trains are out on Arrow Academy.

DVDs

* All My Good Countrymen and The Ear are out on Second Run (although the latter has recently been restored, so I'd wait unless you're desperate to see it, as the DVD is sourced from an ancient transfer).
* Distant Journey is on Filmexport Home Video in the Czech Republic, with English subtitles

Note that All My Good Countrymen is available on BD in the Czech Republic, but without English subtitles.

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What A Disgrace
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Re: Forthcoming: A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#8 Post by What A Disgrace » Fri May 10, 2019 10:07 am

a new restoration of Josef Kilian is going to be included as an extra!

• A Case for a Rookie Hangman (P ípad pro za ínajícího kata, 1969) presented from a brand new 4K restoration of the film from original materials by the Czech National Film Archive.
• Josef Kilián (Postava k podpírání, 1963): presented from a brand new 4K restoration of the film from original materials by the Czech National Film Archive.
• Two additional short films written by Pavel Jurácek and directed by Jan Schmidt:
• Cars Without a Home (Auta bez domova, 1959)
• Black and White Sylva (Cernobílá Sylva, 1961)
• The Projection Booth podcast with Mike White Kat Ellinger, Kevin Heffernan and Peter Hames
• Trailer
• Booklet featuring new writing on the film by film historian Michael Brooke
• New and improved English subtitle translation.
• Region free Blu-ray
• Original soundtrack in 2.0 Dual Mono 24-bit LPCM audio
• UK premiere on Blu-ray

Calvin
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Re: Forthcoming: A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#9 Post by Calvin » Fri May 10, 2019 6:42 pm

Holy moley, this sounds like the best Second Run Blu-Ray yet! Pre-order locked in.

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swo17
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Re: Forthcoming: A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#10 Post by swo17 » Fri May 24, 2019 11:35 am

Image

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Bikey
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Re: Forthcoming: A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#11 Post by Bikey » Sun Jun 02, 2019 5:26 am

Full details now up at our website

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MichaelB
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Re: 126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#12 Post by MichaelB » Tue Jun 18, 2019 2:56 pm


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andyli
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Re: 126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#13 Post by andyli » Wed Jun 19, 2019 7:08 am

Any reason the gargantuan cue mark is not removed in the new 4K restoration (other than the opportunity to admire it in all its 4K glory)?

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MichaelB
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Re: 126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#14 Post by MichaelB » Wed Jun 19, 2019 7:12 am

Deliberate restoration policy on behalf of the Czech National Film Archive, which seeks to restore films to exactly how they looked at the premiere, cue marks and all.

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Bikey
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Re: 126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#15 Post by Bikey » Wed Jun 19, 2019 8:26 am

MichaelB wrote:
Wed Jun 19, 2019 7:12 am
Deliberate restoration policy on behalf of the Czech National Film Archive, which seeks to restore films to exactly how they looked at the premiere, cue marks and all.
It's exactly as MichaelB says. And we're very happy that the Czech National Film Archive does so.

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MichaelB
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Re: 126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#16 Post by MichaelB » Wed Jun 19, 2019 8:29 am

I grew up in rep cinemas and spent six years helping to run one, so I really like these tiny reminders that films were originally distributed on a number of 35mm reels. They were easy enough to tune out then, and it's no harder now.

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Bikey
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Re: 126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#17 Post by Bikey » Wed Jun 19, 2019 9:41 am

"It looks wonderful... Contrast is beautifully rendered and detail is impressive... the image quality is pristine - and it looks excellent in-motion. [...]
A Case for a Rookie Hangman is a brilliantly layered film evoking the surrealism of Jean Cocteau's 'Orpheus' with stunning, Tarkovsky-esque, cinematography by Jan Kalis, wrapped in a child-like dream of political bureaucracy and governmental suppression... a must-own for cinephiles."

So say DVD Beaver

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Re: 126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#18 Post by Telstar » Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:04 pm

Just discovered this is streaming on Amazon. Really wonderful film.

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Bikey
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Re: 126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#19 Post by Bikey » Sun Jun 23, 2019 9:58 am

"Mashing in elements of Alice in Wonderland, it's a wild and paranoid vision that understandably upset authorities and led to the film's suppression for years...
Fascinating from start to finish, this film is loaded with memorable set pieces and manages to maintain a consistent air of quirky surrealism despite the inherently disturbing nature of the subject matter."
Mondo Digital review

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Bikey
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Re: 126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#20 Post by Bikey » Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:09 am

"Second Run remedies all of your problems with its region-free Blu-ray edition...
The black and white textures look excellent here, retaining lovely touches of grain while still exhibiting as much detail as most anyone has probably ever witnessed while viewing this film. The viewing experience is top-notch.
[...]
The special features Second Run provides here are among the finest the label has yet put together for a single film release. "

Clydefro reviews at Cine Outsider - OUT TODAY

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Bikey
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Re: 126 / BD 22 A Case for a Rookie Hangman

#21 Post by Bikey » Tue Jun 25, 2019 8:32 am

"Another obscure gem unearthed by those crazy cats at Second Run... It's one of those films you want to take a second sweep as soon as the final credits have rolled"
David Jenkins reviews in the latest Little White Lies magazine

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