Monday, October 24, 2011

The Fireman's Ball

Milos Forman, Czech Republic (Czechoslovakia back then), 1967, bw (8.2*)
I found Fireman’s Ball to be hilarious, it’s like the “fireman’s ball from hell”. A small town fire department decides to have both it's annual ball as well as an 86th birthday celebration for the former fire chief at the same time.

One main attraction is a big group of door prizes, as one's entrance ticket is also a raffle ticket for these. However, as the film progresses, the door prizes slowly go missing one by one. Another big attraction is the annual beauty pageant. Unfortunately there are no beauties, and even those few are unwilling and flee. The elder firemen resort to drafting reluctant participants from the dance floor.

Nothing really goes according to plan in this comedy of errors. There's a hilarious climax that I can't reveal here, but suffice to say it's more irony-laced humor in this early comic classic from Forman. It's not a big-budget major film like his Oscar® winners shot here (Amadeus (1984) and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)), but it was a nominee for best foreign language film in 1969.


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These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.

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