Kino Světozor Turns 15

The downtown Prague cinema Kino Světozor is celebrating 15 years since it opened in 2004. The cinema, located just off of Wenceslas Square in Pasáž Světozor, has been offering art-house films, documentaries, and festivals.

To mark the anniversary, the cinema will hold a festival from May 24 to 30 called Patnáct (Fifteen), with 13 of the most popular art films of recent years in terms of attendance, and two special events, for a total of 15.

Only four films are English-friendly: Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight, Lars von Trier’s Melancholia, Jim Jarmusch’s Paterson and Wes Anderson’s Moonrise Kingdom. Film tickets are Kč 100 per ticket. 

There is also an English-language encore screening of the NT Live production of the play Frankenstein, directed by Danny Boyle and starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Jonny Lee Miller, with tickets at Kč 250.

The 15th item in the Patnáct program is fun if you have Czech language skills. Kinoautomat: člověk a jeho dům (Kinoautomat: A Man and His House) is an interactive film where people get to vote after several scenes about what happens next. There is a bit of a stage show, with a live moderator. Tickets to this are Kč 200, and early purchase is recommended as this tends to sell out whenever it is shown.

Over the past 15 years, Světozor has hosted 1.9 million viewers at over 48,000 performances. “The building and the original cinema would celebrate 101 years this year, but our memory does not go so far back. We decided to celebrate the modern history of the cinema, which our team,  in almost the same composition, has written since 2004,” says Petr Jirásek, director of kino Světozor.

“We host a lot of festivals and events all year round, so we wanted the Patnáct festival to be about cinema itself. We tried to imagine what movies the cinema would like to play again, films that made us feel great,” Jirásek said.

Recently, the cinema opened a Third Hall, in addition to the original Big Hall and Small Hall. Technically, the Third Hall is smaller than the Small Hall, but the management didn’t want to change names and cause confusion.

The cinema has also introduced a program of special interest to the expat community: English-subtitled screenings of recent foreign-language films in a program called Catch-Up Tuesday. 

The cinema has a bar and lounge, which can be used even without a cinema ticket. The cinema’s hallways and foyer host exhibitions of rare Czech and Polish film posters from 1950 through the1980s. A poster shop is next to the box office.

More information here

Author: Raymond Johnston

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