November 17, 2011

Interview With Grandma ^^

Finally, the much awaited interview with my grandmother has been obtained!

This is the original transcript as i wrote it down (interview conducted via skype) with the translation following.

Me – Co jsi myslis o filmu? Libil? Nelibil?

Kveta – Nebyla to zadna pohadka. Docela strasidelny predstaveny jak by to mohlo byt. Celou dobu jsem myslela o Cernobylu. Takovy filmy nemam moc rada ale rezisera mam rada. Vydela jsem taky Podfuk a Luk Kralovny Dorotky.  Jinak moc se mi libili krajiny a vubec ten stary pan byl rostomili.

Me – Ok tak film byl strasidelny ale co jako koncept? Zajimavy ne? Co zvirata? To byli opravdovy ktery zabili jen pro film.

Kveta – Jak jsem rekla, koncept je velmy zajimavy. Libilo se mi ze spiz prezyli zensky nez muzi ale to nic (haha). Koncept jako celek je moc zajimavy. Takhle by se asi zilo a jak se holky zacaly chovat je fakt strasidelny. Clovek se meni do zvireti a ta stara pani je jedina ktera je drzi k lidstvu. Kdyz stary pokiny zmizy tak nic cloveka nedrzi k dobru. Jsem rada ze jsem nic takoveho nezazila I kdyz, pri case komunistu, kdyz lidi meli malo a potrebuvali hodne tak se taky sem tam zacaly chovat jinak. Skratka, kdyz je ti spatne a nevis jak dal tak zacnes delat skoro co koliv a by si prezil. Neni to pekna vec.  Je to skoda stareho pana ktery myslel po staru ze lidi jsou lidi a umej se chovat. Ja bych asi tak taky byla. Hlavne s mladyma gevcati. To by clovek proste necekal.

Me – a ty zvirata?

Kveta – aha jsem zapomela. Byla to skoda toho psa protoze jsem mela taky takoveho. Psi jsou dobry, proste skoda. Ale ta krava, o tom jsem moc ani nemyslela. Normalne jsem rorezavala mason a chalupe. Doufam ze aspon to maso slou k necemu. Tolik masa jen zahodit by byla smula.

Me – Jeste neco?

Kveta – nic moc, kdyz jsem se podivala na ten film jeste jednou tak se mi libil troche vic ale Ilonce se pored nelibi.

Me – Diky moc

Me - What did you think of the film? Like it? Dislike it?

Kveta - It was no fairy tale. Pretty scary representation of how it could be. The whole time i couldnt help but think of Chernobyl. I dont really like these kind of films but i do like the director. I've also seen Podfuk and Luk Kralovny Dorotky. I did however like the scenes of the countryside and the old man was very cute.  Made me remember Lhotice (where our cottage is in the country)

Me - Ok so the film was scary but what about the concept? Interesting right? What about the animals? They were real animals they killed just for the movie.

Kveta - Like i said, the concept was very interesting. I liked how the women survived rather than the men but never mind (laughs). This is how people would live and how the girls began to act is truly scary. People become animals the old woman is the only one keeping their humanity alive. I'm glad i never experienced anything this bad - When the old ways of acting disappear a nothing holds a person to morals or goodness - although, during the time of the communist occupation, when people had little and they needed a lot they too started acting differently. In other words when the time is bad and you dont know how to continue on you'll start doing almost anything to survive. Its not a nice thing. Its too bad for the old man who thought in the ways of the old world and believed that people still knew how to behave. I would be that way too... Especially when dealing with young girls. You just dont expect that

Me - What about the animals?

Kveta - oh yea i forgot about that part. It was a waste to kill the dog because i also had one just like him. Dogs are good, simply too bad. But the cow, I didnt think much of that. I would normally cut up meat at the cottage. I hope the meat at least went somewhere good. That much meat wasted would be unfortunate.

Me - anything else?

Kveta - Not really. When i watched the film again i liked it a bit more but your mom still doesnt like it.

Me - thanks a lot

Just a personal thank you to my grandmother, Kveta, who even after a recent prolonged stint in the hospital was kind enough to take the time to download, view, and give feedback upon this movie.

November 16, 2011

How do YOU find this film?

I have shown this film to my friends and asked their honest impressions of it. And here are some of their feedback!
*Their names are under an alias

For me, films are a kind of entertainment after all, and so to be honest I don’t think this film has succeeded in attracting people. From the begging until the end, the plot is pretty monotonic and many things (explanations) are unwritten in the film, so the audience is required to “rebuild” the story themselves. I couldn’t really enjoy the film (because I simply prefer relaxing films seen without thinking), but I guess discussing about this film with other people after you watch it would be quite fun because there seems to be many different ways to interpret the story.

So many times this film left me alone…just couldn't get reasons why they (the characters) are behaving so. Maybe that's because it is very difficult for me to feel empathy with them, but at the same time I can say that it’s only natural because the world they live and mine are supposed to be different, and so a way of thinking should be also very very different, shouldn't it?

It is interesting to see how people who are apart from civilized society and accumulation of history are depicted. There is one scene where girls are catching fish and one of them says “Stop it, that’s enough”. This exactly matches my image of such people. What I mean here is that they appreciate nature and take from it just enough to live. On the other hand, very beginning of the film shows them shooting a dog for absolutely no reason, so here is a contradiction. Do they, or human beings under such situation, have a concept of living in harmony with nature? Or again attempt to dominate nature?

Well, how do YOU find “The End of August at the Hotel Ozone”?

Interpret the story

In this film, they do not speak much about their experiences, feelings, thoughts and many other things throughout their lines, and so I would like to pick up some scenes and interpret the theme of this film or meanings behind those scenes. The number of the characters in the film is rather limited, but as a simple binary-opposition, by dividing them into two generations (old and new), each event will be much clearer.
There is one scene where the old man and the old lady introduce themselves. As audience, probably we do not find anything strange here, but one of the young girls looking at them doing self-introduction asks ‘What are you doing?’ with a suspicious gaze. Personally, I clearly understand why she comes up with such question, and in order to understand it, we first perceive again that her “world” is extremely closed in terms of social intercourse. For her, “others” are the only people around her who live together, and there is no such situation in which requires self-introduction as a first step of mingling. She has never experienced to meet new people, and so a concept of self-introduction does not exist inside of her and her world.
If I look at a surface of this film, I could say that it is a story which a old lady brings young girls around to find men for the sake of continuation of human beings. However, besides its façade, this is a journey to be released from a sense of “loneliness” that the old lady is feeling at the level of conscious or unconscious. Of course she is not literally alone because of the young girls, but the memory of the past keeps making her feel lonely.

For the girls, the world in the past is not more than just history or it is some sort of imaginary world that they do not belong to. Those who know the past and do not…this generational difference could not reach the point that the old lady shares her loneliness. The process of telling her name to the old man when they first meet is naturally and smoothly done, but we are shown that the old lady had never told her name to the girls, who have been spending much more time than the old man. And this fact is, for me, a clue that tells there is a sort of invisible wall between two generations.
Therefore, if the Hotel Ozone is a representation of civilized society, it should also have a meaning that the old lady passes away there. Like I mentioned earlier, let’s take this story as her journey to be released from the loneliness. Then the journey faces an end by meeting someone who shares the same memory of the past. In this sense, she achieves her aim, which is once again going back to the world she can feel that she really belongs to. Both the old lady and the man as the old generation or the people from the past stay forever at the Hotel Ozone in a shape of death, and the new generation also go back to their world = post-apocalyptic world (not for them but for us).

November 15, 2011

Personal Reflection on the Movie

Late August at the Hotel Ozone to me is a slow-paced movie with no actual plot. The main part of the film only portrays a daily life of these ladies and how they can survive day-by-day in the post-apocalyptic world. Many scenes in the movie are believable, especially the scenes with animals, which turn out to be real. The relationship between the girls and animals is very memorable; it is brutal, yet compassionate. They treat their horse quite harsh but they depend on their horse so much, for example the scene where the one of the girls got slap by the elder lady, then she ran to her horse as to seek comfort. In this sense we can say that the girls see their horses as their friends, which is great because they treat other animals so mercilessly like they were nothing to them. They shot the dog, gutted the cow and pulled the snake's head off so easily that I was shocked when I found out that those were real animals they used in the production.

The girls are gutting the cow

Comparison between the Rhapsody in August and The End of August at the Hotel Ozone: View on Feminism and generation

I was thinking about the name of the movie today, then suddenly, it came to my mind, there was another movie with a familiar name ‘Rhapsody in August’. Although ‘Rhapsody in August’ was made like 30 years after ‘The End of August at the Hotel Ozone’, the movies seems to have some interesting similarities.

Rhapsody in August DVDs cover

First of all, a short synopsis written by Matthe Rorie about Rhapsody in August:

An elderly woman living in Nagasaki Japan takes care of her four grandchildren for their summer vacation. They learn about the atomic bomb that fell in 1945, and how it killed their Grandfather. (Matthew Rorie <>)

And this is the synopsis of The End of August at the Hotel Ozone.

The End of August at the Hotel Ozone DVDs Cover
Many years after a nuclear holocaust, a small group of young women roam the forests, led by an "Old Woman" (Beta Ponicanová) who wears military garb and tries to keep the less stable members in line…

Rhapsody in August
The End of August at the Hotel Ozone
The point that really stands out in both of these movies is the way that they both show the feminism. Moreover, the main character in these movies is not just women but old women! Why would the director choose these old women? From my own analysis, I believe that old represent the previous generation. Both movies seem to have the plot around the theme of generation. Even though each movie present it in a different way, Rhapsody is about passing on the memories to the next generation while The End of August feature more about what would happen if the old generation died out and there is no one else to teach this next generation, what would the world be like? Moreover, by choosing female to be the lead in both of the movies is another interesting topic. Most people would probably view a female image as weak, wimpy, and not capable of doing great things. However, the female in both movies illustrate a brave and courageous image. The old woman in Rhapsody in August is clearly a leader of these young wild girls and she is certainly in control of everything; she knows and mostly decides what is right and what is wrong. In the scene, where one of the girl throw the bullet in the burning tank and eventually got slap by the old woman; there was no argument, complaints, nothing, this clearly shows that the old woman has the authority over these young girls.

In conclusion, both of these movies, even though made around 30 years apart, both give importance to old generation and female which also show that in along with the equality of woman's right; it could be seen in these entertainment through movies also.

November 12, 2011

Outside Review

This is under a monster movie music blog spot. Reply to this if you agree to what is being said by this one blogger. He does bring up some interesting points but still down plays a lot of the movie.

My personal reflection

My views and thoughts on the movie Late August at the Hotel Ozone.

Late August at the Hotel Ozone is a movie about a band of 7 reckless ladies out in a apocalyptic world. This women have an enormous apatite and a hate for men. My reflection of this film is pretty good in this black and white drama it is filmed very will with minimal affects and cast. The scenes of animal cruelty is real and in a time where this could be done. My first thoughts were the ladies are looking for a man to re populate the world but that is not it. In the end when they finally find a man. They kill him for a gramophone! A very short film but also to the point and the subtitles are pretty dead on too. I watched this with a Czech friend and had him translate along the way and it is dead on.