Review: Varga (2017, Soňa Maletzová)

 

The documentary film directed by Soňa Maletzová is a portrait of Marián Varga, a legend of the Czechoslovak music scene. As many suchlike films, this one too reflects a particularly difficult time in the life of the artist – a different, original, innovative, progressive and controversial musician. Some found his style, artistic and life alike, crazy, whereas others imitated and loved it.

We’re following Varga in his declining years, when he was diagnosed with an incurable disease and little time to live. The brilliant artist is withering, falling into depression and losing his lust for playing music and ultimately life itself.

 

 

The entire film is based on contrasts. The old versus the new, then and today, health and illness. Even some of the very musician’s attitudes eventually change and become contradictory. He admits that he “once had strong opinions on everything, but now everything is infested with a kind of relativism.” Although introverted but still avid for live and creating music, Varga lived his life to the fullest. Thanks to his fame and recognition, he waltzed through life almost without obstacles. “And that’s not good,” says the musician. Now he feels just like Meursault from Camus’ Stranger. He’s suffused with feelings of scepticism, indifference and over time even depression. The moment when a time-lapse of his life unwinds before his eyes, it’s spirituality that suddenly acquires a different dimension.

 

One of the film’s strongest assets is its montage. The “exhibition” editing begins with a rapid photographic montage and continues with associative editing methods, binding the director’s film material with archival footage from TV, various shows and concerts. Similarity acts as a base glue for the old and the new. It is a transition tool between the film’s time and spatial lines. Although the film contains many conventional metaphors and metonymies (a ticking clock, indicating the merciless and irreversible passage of time or a cigar, representing the protagonist himself), they do not come across as hackneyed, but fit nicely into the contrasting film poetics. Its dramaturgical miniature is excellent as well, from exposition through peripety and all the way to the climax with an expressive catharsis. Moreover, the viewer does not even need to know the actual protagonist or Marián Varga’s works to understand they’re witnessing a musical genius.

 

The film will be screened in a special sneak preview, personally attended by its director Soňa Maletzová, editor Marek Šulík and a member of the band Queer Jane, Vladimír Nosáľ, at 8 p.m. in Kino Mladosť.

 

Mária Demečková

 

On Tuesday 14th November in kino Lumière were announced the winners of 19th Bratislava IFF. Festival continues in kino Mladost, MIER in Modre, Mier in Senec and Zahoran in Malacky. 

Interview

 

The White World According to Daliborek (2017) and its main protagonist – a “gentle neo-Nazi” have prompted a controversial reaction in the Czech Republic. Klusák came across Dalibor on the Internet.

 

We’re slowly nearing the end of the festival and Kinečko has some recommendations for today’s screenings. This time we’re leaving Bratislava and expanding to the nearby cities.

Even today we’re here to recommend where to go and what to see.

(Interview)

Zuzana Golianová asked Jean-Marc Barr 10 questions.

The core of Kinečko film magazine is here again to recommend a couple of films you can’t miss.

Even today, the core of Kinečko film magazine has joined forces to bring you a couple of hot tips and recommendations.

 

Due to technical problems during the previous screening of the film HOUSE WITHOUT ROOF (dir.Soleen Yusef), we added a special screening on Sunday, November 12 at 1pm in Kine Lumière K4.

 

Just like yesterday, the core of Kinečko film magazine has come together to bring you a couple of hot tips and recommendations for today.

 

The documentary film directed by Soňa Maletzová is a portrait of Marián Varga, a legend of the Czechoslovak music scene. As many suchlike films, this one too reflects a particularly difficult time in the life of the artist – a different, original, innovative, progressive and controversial musician. Some found his style, artistic and life alike, crazy, whereas others imitated and loved it.

 

This year the renowned Canadian director of experimental, documentary and fiction films Denis Côté comes with his new release A Skin So Soft, combining all these three types of film, although most of all, it can be labelled a documentary. The filmmaker follows a group of bodybuilders throughout their everyday lives, but focuses mainly on various activities related to weight training and working out, their mutual hobbies.