“Alive and well in Prague ”
Moving countries won´t solve anything.
Four ex-pats living in Prague, Czech Republic have been filmed at intervals over the last 4 years. Working in a variety of professions, from actor to English teacher, they all share the same predicament : living in a foreign society can be difficult, even impossible at times.
After setting the scene in Prague, the characters are introduced in their natural setting. Stefan, an American, has just made his first film, a porn feature, and is looking to sell it in the open market. Francis, an English teacher, is also harbouring a potentially lethal drink problem. Todd, a Californian actor, outlines what it is to be a struggling actor in the city. Ruth, also an English teacher, depicts the long-term effects of staying in a society so different from the one she grew up in. Over the course of time, each follows their own path, from one of them achieving relative stability, to another succumbing to chronic alcoholicism. In the meantime, we gain an insight into the Czech mentality, how it differs and is similar to our own, and we see how even living in one of the most beautiful cities in the world can have a dark side. We conclude with a status update of each character.
The making of the film
Although the running time of the theatrical cut is 73 mins, five versions of this project are in existence, with different characters entering and leaving the project at different times, with running lengths from 120 mins to 60 mins. This, however, is viewed by the director as the definitive version. The director does not rule out the possibility of shooting updates at a later date.
The work started as a project at FAMU, on which the director Pavel Koutecky consulted before his untimely death, and grew into a full length feature as it became obvious that here were four very separate but compelling stories to be told. Filming on a shoestring budget, before high definition cameras were mainstream, and without microphones to preserve reality as much as possible, the director filmed all the material personally, before spending 3 months assembling a rough cut on his editing equipment.
Plans are currently under way to shoot a follow-up piece in Berlin, again exploring the very prescient phenomenon of migration and its ramifications on a local society.
Written, directed, filmed, edited, and produced by Edward Longmire
Music by Gunnar Tryggvason
Alive And Well In Prague, screening at Bio Oko, Františka Křížka 15, Praha 7: 7th June 2010, 8.30 p.m.
Bio Oko Booking Form: click here
Facebook event: www.facebook.com/home.php#!/event.php?eid=115830708455708&ref=ts
Director’s website: www.edwardlongmire.com/