In the Czech environment, the 1990s were more likely to favor fantasy themes in literature than elsewhere. It’s no surprise then that Jan Sverak’s science fiction movie was a rather isolated event in post-revolution cinema, and thus the picture had all the more impact on genre-starved audiences of the time. The story of exhausted Olda – who battles a parallel world behind his television screen as it attempts to siphon off his energy – represented the then apex of local special-effects technology, but it is also a stellar parody of popular Hollywood blockbusters. Olda´s unequal fight against the beguiling TV machinery has proven to be one of the most imaginative tales in which people try to escape from a trap that they themselves devised.

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