March 18 – 29
At Tower City
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Events + Updates
Country: CZECH REPUBLICA
Run Time: 90 minutes
Věra Čáslavská is a Czech Olympic champion who, in 1968, was voted the world's second most popular woman after Jackie Kennedy. A cheerful blonde who excelled in every area of gymnastics, Věra shot to fame in 1964 after winning three gold medals at the Tokyo Olympics. Four years later, in Mexico City, she won four more. But Věra's life has not been all sunshine and adulation, and VERA 68 tells her story. One courageous act of silent protest changed her life forever. In 1968 the Soviets invaded Czechoslovakia, and at that year's Olympics all eyes were on Věra. As the Soviet anthem played, she simply turned her head aside. An outcast in her newly Socialist country, she was reduced to cleaning houses in disguise. But as the Cold War ended, President Vaclav Havel hired her as an advisor. Věra remains an ebullient woman who notes that life -- like gymnastics -- has some ups and downs. May Věra Čáslavská continue to celebrate her ups. (In Czech, Spanish, and Japanese with subtitles) – B.B.
Olga Sommerová studied at the Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, where she was later Head of the Documentary Department. One of the most controversial Czech documentary filmmakers working today, Sommerová focuses on writers, politicians, and ordinary women.
"The Blessed Damned Poet Bohumil Hrabal" (1998), "What Women Dream About" (1999), "The Lost Soul of a Nation" (2001), "21 Spokespersons of Charter 77" (2010), VERA 68 (2012)