“Why has my shitty life turned out like this? No-one knows. Not even God. God’s on holiday and he’s reading porn” – an excerpt from Diary of the Forgotten, the journal kept by the main protagonist in another of Helena Třeštíková’s long-term documentaries. With raw authenticity, the director records the luckless fate of René over a period of twenty years as he yo-yos between prison and freedom. The life of René, who successfully styles himself in the role of a desperado, unfolds against a backdrop of important political events occurring in the Czech Republic and beyond its borders. The Velvet Revolution, the presidential election, 9/11 and the Czech Republic’s accession to the EU – all this is “digested” by René, mostly from the confines of various prisons. –Taskovski Films
Helena Třeštíková (born 1949) has been shooting documentary films for 35 years and ranks among the most productive filmmakers in this field. Graduated from FAMU (The Prague Film School) in 1974, Třeštíková has made about sixty documentaries of varying length, usually focused on human relationships and social problems. Later she specialized on long-term observational documentary: following human lives over a longer period of time. Her first cycle of observational documentaries followed for six years the everyday lives of several young couples, starting from the day of their marriage. The film crew then regularly visited and recorded their problems, dreams, desires, in some cases also crises, a divorce, a reconciliation. In 1991 Třeštíková with several sociologists and her fellow filmmakers set up a foundation called Film and Sociology (Nadace Film a sociologie). The foundation’s aim is to help provide a new picture of the society after the momentous political changes. In 1994 she and… read more
A pointless portrait of a parasite on society. The camera checks in with Rene for a near 20 year period from his first jail time as a young offender to his stint after stint in adulthood. The only thing consistent is his lack of ability to ever learn or change. The fact that Trestikova wasted so much time on this seems like effort ill served. Mind you Rene continues to steal, he just stole an hour plus of my time.