Czechoslovakian director Milos Forman’s final film in his home country; he was scouting locations in Paris when the Russians moved their tanks into Prague in 1968 causing Forman to decide to remain an expatriate.

Because of the supercharged political climate of the era, critics read all sorts of allegory and hidden meanings into ‘the Firemen’s Ball’.

The film is shot through with the darkest of Czech humor- everyone, from the committee to the people, to the landscape itself is the butt of a joke, representative of petty rivalries, drunken idiocy, and smug leadership that cannot lead.

This film is part of Comedy Genius, a nationwide season led by BFI, the Independent Cinema Office and BFI Film Audience network, supported by funds from the National Lottery. For more screenings go to bficomedy.co.uk.   

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