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Photo: Film: Havel by Director Slávek Horák
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Film Screening: Havel

Date: 13 July 2022 8:00 PM - 10:00 PM, Venue: Avalon Theatre

The Avalon Theatre, in collaboration with the Czech Embassy, presents the film Havel, a drama inspired by the life and personal development of Václav Havel, prominent Czech playwright, dissident, and president.

The film stars Viktor Dvořák as Havel, centering on his tumultuous personal life, dominated by the struggle for truth, persecution, imprisonment, as well as love. Actress Ana Geislerová, one of the top actresses of her generation, plays Havel’s wife Olga. Director Slávek Horák takes creative liberties with the film, condensing the story and dramatizing the essence of Havel, while trying to stay faithful to the spirit of those events and facts. He shows a man with personal flaws battling his own conscience and injustices. 

Event Details:

Date/Time: July 13, 8 pm

Location: Avalon Theatre

5612 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20015

Tickets: https://www.theavalon.org/films/havel/    

Additional Details about the Film:

Havel, Directed by Slávek Horák, 2020, 103 min., Czech with English subtitles

The film garnered multiple Czech Lion nominations (the highest honor in the Czech Republic) in such categories as Best Director, Best Film, Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Screenplay. Director Slávek Horák was named by Variety as one of the top ten directors to watch.    

The film is part of the kick off for the Czech Republic’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union.

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3oS50-YOjJo&t=2s

Review of the film: https://variety.com/2020/film/reviews/havel-review-1234710608/    

Historical Notes:       

Václav Havel (1936-2011), playwright, essayist, poet, dissident, and politician, was one of the writers of Charter 77, a document that criticized the communist government for failing to implement human rights provisions. After the Velvet Revolution in 1989, which brought freedom and democracy to the country, Havel became the tenth and last President of Czechoslovakia and the first President of the Czech Republic. Shortly after his election, he gave a speech to the joint session of the U.S. Congress. In his speech, he stated, “The salvation of this human world lies nowhere else than in the human heart, in the human power to reflect, in human meekness and in human responsibility.” Havel received numerous state decorations, honorary doctorates, and international awards, including the U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom. After leaving office, he continued to work in human rights, creating the Forum 2000 Foundation. Havel passed away on December 18, 2011.        

Havel was a great friend of former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. She even came to the Czech Embassy in Washington, DC, to sign his book following his passing and spoke at his funeral in Prague, Czech Republic. At Albright’s funeral recently, President Biden called her a “daughter of the Czech Republic.” He said that when she eulogized Havel she used these words, “He cast light into places of deepest darkness and reminded us constantly of our obligations to one another.”