Obrazy Starého Sveta
1972 / 70m - Czechoslovakia
Pictures of the Old World poster


January 04, 2023


Films like these are pretty easy to assess. Either you care for what they're trying to do, and they end up bona fide masterpieces. Or you don't, and they're hell to sit through. At least Pictures of the World was quite short, but even that didn't save it from getting on my nerves just a few minutes in.

Director Hanak shoots a documentary about elderly people living in the Liptov and Orava areas, letting himself be inspired by the photography of Martin Martincek. This results in several portraits of peculiar people, which is pretty much what this entire niche of documentaries is all about.

I didn't care for any of these people, nor their struggles, nor their outlooks on life. The black-and-white cinematography was a minor plus, yet it wasn't strong enough to stand on its own. The soundtrack on the other hand was excruciating. Not very memorable, but then again I'm so far removed from the target audience that it's hardly surprising.