Second Run DVD to release Dušan Hanák’s ‘PICTURES OF THE OLD WORLD’ on 23 February

Pictures of the Old World

(Obrazy starého sveta)

A Film Dušan Hanák

Dušan Hanák’s renowned film (voted ‘the best Slovak film of all time’ by critics in 2000) is a poetic visual essay on the forgotten peoples of remote villages in the Tatra Mountains.

Inspired by the photographs of Slovak artist Martin Martinček (1913–2004), whose pictures distilled entire lifetimes into luminous, intransient images, Hanák creates his own distinctive impressions of the artist’s work, crafting a polyphony of human stories.

The film documents the lives of nine old people – the textures of faces, of hands, and of landscape predominate alongside an obstinate vitality and desire for life.

At odds with the Communist propaganda of the time, its depiction of poverty punctuated with alcoholism, religion, and the hardships of the subjects’ lives, resulted in the film being withdrawn from release.

Condemned for its “aesthetics of ugliness”, the film remained banned for many years. However, Hanák’s film is not a political, polemical or even social film.

It goes far deeper to more fundamental levels of human experience – its power and beauty lies in its unique portrait of a people who seem to have been forgotten by the modern world.


DVD Special Features:

• New HD digital transfer with restored picture and sound.

• Dušan Hanák’s acclaimed short films Mass (Omša, 1967) and Old Shatterhand Came to Us (Prišiel k nám Old Shatterhand, 1966).

• Booklet featuring a new essay by author and critic Jonathan Owen.

• New and improved English subtitle translation.


Release Date: 23 February, 2015

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