90 Degrees in the Shade

90 Degrees in the Shade

Jirí Weiss (1965)

86min
12 Certificate
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Review

Our Score
The connection between gritty British realism and the Czech New Wave is readily evident in Jirí Weiss's stark allegory. Set in a Prague off-licence, it centres on the efforts of manager (and covert black marketeer) James Booth and mistress Anne Heywood to replace some stolen whisky bottles before a pair of government inspectors (Donald Wolfit and Rudolf Hrusinsky) complete a stock take. Tautly scripted by David Mercer and shot in close-ups to emphasise the oppressive sense of constant surveillance and suspicion, the action contrasts the plight of the lovers with the officious Hrusinsky's unhappy home life, as he is loathed for being a Communist Party lackey by both his wife (Ann Todd) and their teenage son. Filmed in Barrandov Studios on evocatively dingy sets, this may be dramatically uneven in places. But it also offers an intriguing insight into life in the Czech capital prior to the Prague Spring in 1968.

Summary

The married manager of a shop and his secret lover have to contend with an auditor who has discovered illegal activity. Crime thriller, starring Anne Heywood and James Booth.

Cast & Crew

Alena Anne Heywood
Vorell James Booth
Mr Kurka Rudolf Hrusinsky
Mrs Kurka Ann Todd
Bazant Donald Wolfit
Director Jirí Weiss
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Other Information

Language: EnglishBlack and whiteAvailable on: DVD
Drama