Joaquin Phoenix in Joker. via Warner Bros

Prague art cinemas showing recent hits for 69 CZK each

Films ranging from Joker to Downton Abbey will be in Prague cinemas at a discount

You can see the top hit films of 2019 for just 69 CZK each at Prague’s Lucerna, Evald, Mat, and Atlas cinemas from December 12 to 19 at Best Film Fest.

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The festival has been taking place since 2011 and now has summer and winter editions. Evald and Mat as well as the small halls in Lucerna and Atlas have limited space.

People are encouraged to buy tickets in advance, especially for the more popular titles. Many of the films are in English.

The comic book-inspired Joker, which won Best Film in Venice, and Quentin Tarantino’s take on cinema in 1969, Once Upon a Time In Hollywood (Tenkrát v Hollywoodu), are expected to be big players in the upcoming award season.

Both directors plus actors Joaquin Phoenix, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Brad Pitt should get nominations for their work in the films.

Flying a bit under the radar, Woody Allen’s latest film A Rainy Day in New York (Deštivý den v New Yorku) featured stars Timothée Chalamet, Elle Fanning, Selena Gomez, Jude Law, and Diego Luna in a comic romantic plot.

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For sci-fi fans there is the space opera Ad Astra, with Brad Pitt on an interplanetary journey that requires him to confront family issues. The time-travel action flick Terminator: Dark Fate (Terminátor: Temný osud) puts Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton back together to face another wave of killer robots. Both films underperformed at the box office, despite generally good reviews.

The life of rock star Elton John is told in Rocketman, blending fact with fantasy elements and a great musical score, plus Taron Egerton’s uncanny performance. A bit on the ponderous side, Danny Boyle’s romantic comedy Yesterday shows an alternative universe where the Beatles never existed. Ed Sheeran has a minor role. Ron Howard’s documentary Pavoratti, mostly in English, looks at the opera singer.

Costume dramas are covered with Downton Abbey (Panství Downton) and The Bookshop (Florencino knihkupectví).The former is a continuation of the TV series, and the latter is set in a small English coastal town in the 1950s. Both are filled with intrigue.

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More history can be found in The Prague Orgy (Pražské orgie), based on Philip Roth’s novella about his efforts to help writers in Prague under normalization. A true sports tale, The Keeper (Brankář) follows former German POW Bert Trautmann, who played football for Manchester City.

A boy who lost his mother in a bombing incident struggles with the legacy in The Goldfinch (Stehlík).The horror comedy film In Fabric (Takové krásné šaty) has a divorced woman coming into possession of a red dress that has its own agenda.

The remaining films are in their original versions but with Czech subtitles, or in Czech. Notable among these is Cannes film festival winner Parasite (Parazit), the World War II drama The Painted Bird (Nabarvené ptáče), and the Czech revenge thriller Old-Timers (Staříci).

For a complete schedule, visit the festival website.

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