A rather silly cinematic operetta with catchy songs from Szabolcs Fényes and Iván Szenes. What could be so interesting about that? We already knew that the tyrants loved musical mass entertainment. The Rákosi era in Hungary was full of such works: Mickey Magnate, Reprezentația, The State Department Store, 2x2 Is Sometimes 5. But if you examine these films in detail, it turns out you will learn much more about the era than you might have thought. While The State Department Store was forced to dance its dance tied by the shackles of daily propaganda, the pilots of 2x2 Is Sometimes 5, which premiered almost exactly two years later, were allowed to fly with slightly less-clipped wings.
To a modern eye, of course, the uniforms, red flag, marching and parades may seem a little over the top. But the images of comrades Stalin and Rákosi are gone from the walls. You aren't constantly bombarded by slogans, and it also seems the rules of the road have now changed: you no longer have to give right of way to the big cars in black. Comrade Stalin passed away in 1953, and Comrade Rákosi's position was also shaken. And while the film itself is not exactly a fast-acting platoon on th...e front of class warfare, Hungarian filmmakers were able to detect the changes in the world around them with some precision. Particularly when it comes to entertainment films. After all, hit films of the era tended to attract six to eight million viewers to the cinema. And by that time the blessed public was not entirely stupid. We are aware, of course, that the music bears much of the weight, yet contemporary audiences could feel it was possible to take a deep breath after the removal of ÁVO head honcho Gábor Péter. Don't get us wrong, this is not the land of the free, but there is a slight relief from the terror of hearing a knock on the door. After an era where one million Hungarian citizens were being monitored - and not without consequences. Though the film's director György Révész has not made it into the pantheon of Hungarian cinema, his life's work demonstrates just how a filmmaker had to steer through the increasingly shifting sands and pitfalls laid out by the powers that be. And in several of his films, he also succeeded in showing us how the stomachs of the passengers were often turned on their rocky voyage.
In Hungarian, without subtitles.
The discussions before and after the screening will be conducted in Hungarian.
Presented by: Müpa Budapest
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