People of a certain advanced age may well remember the Prague Spring of 1968, when Czech students threatened the gray Communist regime with love in their eyes and flowers in their hair. Moviegoers of a younger age, however, know this period through The Unbearable Lightness of Being, the adaptation of Milan Kundera's novel that introduced Juliette Binoche to the world.
Now there's a Prague Spring for a whole new generation, courtesy of Chapel Hill filmmaker Rajeev Dassani. His Prague Spring is an ambitious 38-minute tale of Robert and Natalie, two lovers who enliven their romance by adopting alter egos Boris and Svetlana, two freedom fighters embroiled in the politics of the day.
Are you hooked yet? We sure are, especially since Dassani and his co-writer Kristen Johnson tell us that they took their production on location in Prague itself. Furthermore, the film marks the film debut of local theater performer Katja Hill, who was recently hailed by Indy critic Byron Woods as "one of the region's most accomplished comic actors." Hill's co-star Zach Armfield is local, as well, having recently graduated from Duke.
The world premiere of Prague Spring will by next Wednesday, March 19 at Chapel Hill's Varsity Theater. Showtime is 6 p.m. and tickets are $3. If you miss this one, Dassani tells us that a Durham screening is planned for April.