Barking Boxshot
Czechoslovakia, 1967
Length / Happy End: 73 minutes
Length / Special feature: 33 minutes
Sound: 2.0 Dual-Mono LPCM (48khz/24-bit)
Original aspect ratio: 1.37:1
Language: Czech
Subtitles: English

Blu-Ray BD50 / 1080p / 24fps / Region ABC
RRP: £19.99

Release Date: 25 March 2024
SRBD 077


Oldřich Lipský's one-of-a-kind Czech black comedy employs an ingenious twist - telling the life story of a condemned murderer entirely in reverse: from his 'birth' at the guillotine, to his departure as an infant. Utilising the techniques of silent cinema, the film plays with the flow of cinematic time to audacious effect.

Starring the great Vladimír Menšík in a rare leading role, this wildly inventive and disarmingly hilarious Czech film predates the use of reverse-chronology narratives in more celebrated fiction, theatre and international cinema. Upending the usual narrative flow, Happy End is a darkly surreal Dadaist delight.

Second Run present the world Blu-ray premiere of the beloved Happy End from a brand new 4K restoration. Our region-free Blu-ray also includes a new video essay by Cerise Howard, a Projection Booth audio commentary, plus a booklet with new writing on the films by author and commentator Jonathan Owen.

more about the film

Blonde Stills

Special Features

• Happy End (Šťastný konec, 1967) presented from an HD transfer from the new 4K restoration created by the Czech National Film Archive.

• Cerise Howard on ‘Happy End’: a video essay by film critic
and Program Director of the Melbourne Queer Film Festival.

• A Projection Booth audio commentary with Mike White, Kat Ellinger and Ben Buckingham.

• Booklet featuring a substantial new essay by writer and commentator Jonathan Owen. .

• New and improved English subtitle translation.

• World premiere on Blu-ray.

• Region Free (A/B/C) Blu-ray.

Related Titles

Directed by Oldřich Lipský

Screenplay - Miloš Macourek, Oldřich Lipský
Director of Photography - Vladimír Novotný
Music - Vlastimil Hála
Sound - Josef Vlček
Editor - Miroslav Hájek
Production design - Karel Škvor
Costumes - Theodor Pištěk

Vladimír Menšík - Bedřich Frydrych
Jaroslava Obermaierová - Julia Frydrych
Josef Abrhám - Jeník Ptáček (‘Mr Birdie’)
Bohuš Záhorský - Tchán
Stella Zázvorková - Tcyhné
Helena Ružičková - Anežka
Jiří Steimar - Judge
Martin Růžek - Žalobce
Bedřich Prokoš - Kněz
Josef Hlinomaz - Komisar

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“As conceptually and formally radical, and virtuosic, as any helmed by the New Wave’s celebrated, most outré directors... can astonish even the most cinephilic audiences today with its singular bravura” Senses of Cinema

“Like Memento multiplied by ten to the power of infinity and scripted by Spike Milligan [...] Happy End is one of the supreme Czech whimsies, blackly comic and a miracle of screenwriting”
Wonders in the Dark

“One of the triumphs of the Czech New Wave. You have never seen a film like this, and I doubt you ever will again... one of the most outrageous, daring, hilarious and whimsically unnerving films ever made” MondoExploito

“A twisted comedy with some truly hilarious moments” Bonjour Tristesse

“No movie of that era subverted its storytelling as methodically as does Happy End... A unique comic fantasy” MediaLifeCrisis

“Lipský’s game-changing comedy pokes fun at communism while keeping all the gears in the viewer’s head turning at full speedFour Movies in Reverse - Celluloid Paradiso

“Will put a big dumb grin on your face... the bravura way in which Oldřich Lipský flourishes the reverse chronology trick
is worth your time alone... clever and often hilarious”

Czech Film Review

“As an allegory of passion in love, Happy End is a cinematic jewel. [...] In another film, the storyline may have been rather predictable, but here it is all new and shiny”
East European Film Bulletin

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