Otakar Vávra, 1947

Film at Filmový přehled


Otakar Vávra made no less than two film adaptations of Karel Čapek’s science fiction mystery novel Krakatit. The first appeared in 1948 under the same title, while the second, a rather forced modernised interpretation entitled Temné slunce (The Dark Sun), was released 32 years later. Although reasonably faithful to the book, Vávra’s framing of Krakatit – the wounded hero is fighting for his life in hospital – is to the detriment of the literary original work’s open character. Thus the story about the gifted chemist Prokop – who in vain tries to prevent his revolutionary invention, an explosive called krakatite, from being abused – takes on the form of a feverishly pressing flashback. Vávra’s adaptation amplified the anti-war side of Čapek’s story, however, using it to take ideological aim at power-hungry capitalism. Among the undeniable qualities of this film, which follows the French cinematic style of poetism, is the humanism deeply imbued by the acting performance of Karl Höger, who plays the leading role.
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Film data

About a film

Production year 1947
Countries Czechoslovakia
Categories film
Genres drama, fantastic, allegory, psychological
Form feature
Duration 98 min
Director Otakar Vávra
Cast Karel Höger, Florence Marly, František Smolík, Nataša Tanská, Miroslav Homola
Director of photography Václav Hanuš
Screenplay Jaroslav R. Vávra, Otakar Vávra
Editor Antonín Zelenka
Production designer Jan Zázvorka
Music Jiří Srnka
Sound designer Emil Poledník