Gallery Trailer

Eighty Letters

About the film

Director: Václav Kadrnka
Screenwriter: Jiří Soukup, Václav Kadrnka
Director of Photography: Braňo Pažitka
Set Designer: Zdeněk Eliáš
Editor: Pavel Kolaja
Sound designer: Jan Čeněk
Producer: Václav Kadrnka

Featuring: Zuzana Lapčíková, Martin Pavluš

Type of film: Feature, Drama
Running time: 75 minutes
Format: 35mm
Originally shot on: 16mm
Screening ratio: 1:1,85
Sound: Dolby Digital

Czech Republic / 2011

World premiere - Berlinale-Forum  2011


Eighty Letters is autobiographically based. The source of the film are the memories of the director and the surviving correspondence between his parents. The story takes place in Czechoslovakia in 1987. The father has defected to England and the mother and her son are planning to leave the country to be reunited with him. Husband, wife, child – even at a distance they are still together, but the forced break-up of any family is an abnormal situation. The events of the film are viewed from the boy’s perspective, the exasperated gaze of one lacking experience, his initiation in the course of this single day - the film.  It is the day when the youth gets a glimpse of adulthood and overcomes fear. His mother’s movements are part of an intensified daily routine, as she maps it out hour by hour. It is a battlefield situation for her. She is on her way, her son catches up with her on that path, but she must act alone if they are to achieve completeness together.

Je to deň, v ktorom chlapec nahliadne do dospelosti a musí prekonať strach. Jeho mama sa pohybuje v sprísnenom dennom režime, v rozplánovaní dňa hodinu po hodine. Taká je jej bojová situácia. Práve je na ceste, syn ju na tej ceste dobehne, ale ona musí samostatne konať, aby spoločne dosiahli úplnosť.

CV of director

Václav Kadrnka -  was born in September 1973 in Zlín, Czech Republic. In 1988, he emigrated with his family to the United Kingdom, where he studied theatre. From 1999 till 2008 he studied feature film directing at the Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts (FAMU) in Prague. His student films have been presented at many international film festivals (Mar del Plata, Munich, New York, Karlovy Vary, Berlin, etc.) and won awards both at home and abroad. His full-length feature debut Eighty Letters was premiered at the International Film Festival Berlinale 2011. The film was projected as an official selection and gained international recognition. It has been presented at many other international festivals including Thessaloniki, Vancouver, Denver, Linz, Copenhagen, Buenos Aires, Istanbul, Karlovy Vary and Gijon, receiving major awards, including the Silver Alexander, the special jury award and the FIPRESCI Prize at the Thessaloniki International Film Festival 2011, the Silver Star for the best director at the International film festival Cinedays at Skopje 2011, and the Golden Kingfisher Award for the best Czech feature film at Finale Pilsen 2011. In 2012, Václav Kadrnka was awarded the Czech film critics prize for discovery of the year.

 Jeho študentské filmy boli prezentované na mnohých mezinárodných filmových festivaloch (Mar del Plata, Mnichov, New York, Karlovy Vary, Berlín, atd.) a získal ocenenia doma i v zahraničí. Od roku 2008 pracuje na volnej nohe ako režisér, scenárista a producent. Osemdesiat listov je jeho celovečerným debutom.