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Czech Republic / Slovakia, 2005 (MIFF 2006, International Panorama)

Director: Jan Svankmajer


“What could be more natural than cult director Jan Svankmajer pairing the poetic twins of decadence, Edgar Allan Poe and the Marquis de Sade? Combining live action with the Czech director's wondrously inventive brand of animation, Lunacy is billed as a horror film, with all the degeneracy of the genre, but refuses simple straight jacketing… Fans won't be disappointed.” - Variety Master of surreal cinema Jan Svankmajer's new feature film is a joyous trip, an explication of his firmly held belief that life is lunacy and the lunatics have taken over the asylum. Loosely based on two short stories by Edgar Allen Poe, with a leading character inspired by the Marquis de Sade, Lunacy is an allegory for the crazy world we live in. Young Jean, plagued by maddening nightmares after his mother's funeral, is invited by a Marquis to spend the night in his castle. After helping him conquer his fears through a blasphemous orgy and a 'therapeutic' funeral, the Marquis takes his guest to an asylum where the situation is unstable, at best…

D/S Jan Svankmajer P Jaromir Kallista WS Athanor L Czech w/English Subtitles TD 35mm/2005/121mins Jan Svankmajer was born in Prague, Czech Republic in 1934 his films include Faust (1994), Conspirators of Pleasure (1996) and Little Otik (2000).

See also...


With shades of David Lynch's Eraserhead, Jan Svankmajers Little Otik is an astonishing modern adaptation of a traditional Czech fairy-tale. Karel, the husband of a barren couple, attempts to console ... More »

Game with Stones

An animated film involving destructive stones. ... More »

Death of Stalinism in Bohemia

A condensed imaginative survey of Czechoslova­kia's 42 years under communist rule-as seen through the eyes and mind of surrealist Jan Svankmajer. ... More »


Self-appointed 'militant surrealist' Jan Svankmajer describes his most recent film as a 'grotesque black comedy'. This latest work from the Czech director combines his signature Surrealist ... More »


... ... A Faust for our uncertain times from one of the world's most original filmmakers and brilliant animators. Abandon objective logic when you enter the wonderful world of Jan Svankmajer and ... More »


Civilisation exists on the backs of starving mil­lions, but also at the expense of future genera­tions. Civilisation survives by stuffing itself at all costs with the cannibalising of culture ... More »

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