Elementary School (1991): Jan Sverak’s Feature Debut, Foreign Language Oscar Nominee

In Jan Sverak’s Elementary School, which is set in 1945, right after WWII, Eda, who is 10, and his friend Tonda live in a small village outside Prague.

In school, their class is so erratic and undisciplined that their teacher quits and is replaced by the militant Igor Hnidzo, who is very strict.  But then the studnets find out that Igor has one major  weakness, strong interest in young women.

Sensitively directed by Czech director Jan Sverak, in an impressive feature debut, “Elementary School” is by turns light, bittersweet, and nostalgic in depciting the pimpact of a disruptive system on its pupils.

Sverak also co-wrote the script and stars in the film.

Running time: 100 Minutes.

 

Oscar Nominations: 1

Best Foreign Language Film

Oscar Awards: None

Oscar Context:

The winner of the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar was the Italian entry, “Mediterraneo.”