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Gustav Machatý
Czechoslovakia 1929 / 85’
silent movie with live music

Erotikon may not be the most representative work of Czechoslovak cinema, but it is definitely one of the finest products of its fruitful silent era. Director Machatỳ focuses on love, passion, and sexuality. Social convention dictated that even the visual representations of eroticism available in the 1920s were bound to stir controversy. Modern cinema has exploited all reserves of eroticism and nothing remains of the controversy that once overshadowed the film’s artistic value, enabling audiences to appreciate the directorial and cinematographer’s skill in a poetic representation of repressed sensuality.

The 2011 edition of New Horizons presents Eroticon with a live performance of the Icon Orchestra quartet, internationally renowned for popularising this classic Czechoslovak film.

Patryk Tomiczek

Gustav Machatỳ

Born in 1901 in Prague, Machatý was a director, screenwriter, actor, and sometimes a producer and editor. He began work in film’s silent era and ended in 1955 with his Swedish drama, Suchkind 312. Before taking up directing, he learned filmmaking as an assistant to David Wark Griffith and Erich von Stroheim. His two films, Eroticon (1929) and Ecstasy (1933), won him international acclaim. He died in 1963 in Germany.

Selected filmography

1927 Kruetzerowa Sonáta

1929 Erotikon / Eroticon

1931 Z soboty na niedzielę / Ze soboty na nedeli

1933 Ekstaza / Ekstase

1955 Suchkind 312

Prepared by: Patryk Tomiczek

Cast & Crew

director Gustav Machatý
screenplay Gustav Machatý
cinematography Vaclav Vich
editing E.B. White
music Icon Orchestra
cast Ita Rina, Olaf Fjord, Charlotte Suza, Šleichert, Teodor Pištĕk, Luigi Serventi, Karel Schleichert
production Gem-Film
source of print Czeskie Centrum w Warszawie
language Chech
colouration b&w