Athanor – The Alchemical Furnace

Adam Olha, Jan Daňhel

IFFR 2020

Regained

  • 117'
  • Czech Republic
  • 2020

Jan Švankmajer at 85 years of age is one of the most prominent artists of European cinema. His work has inspired and guided generations of directors, and his work represents a sharp and merciless exploration of human nature which is entirely unique. When Švankmajer decided to stop filming after Insect (2018), his producer suggested that the creative processes which ferment within their film company Athanor should be preserved on film.

Over three years, the directors followed the life of Jan Švankmajer, elucidating his artistic principles, as well as his collaboration with old friend and producer Jaromír Kallista. The film is also haunted by the memory of Eva Švankmajerová, his wife and creative partner, muse and inseparable other half. Alchemical Furnace is shot on various film formats in combination with found footage. Playful and poetic, candid and with a touch of Czech humour, it is an ode to creation and to companionship.

Directors
Adam Olha, Jan Daňhel
Premiere
World premiere
Countries of production
Czech Republic, Slovakia
Production Year
2020
Festival Edition
IFFR 2020
Length
117'
Medium
DCP
Original title
Alchymická pec
Languages
Czech, English
Producers
Jaromír Kallista, Zuzana Mistrikova
Production Companies
Athanor - Film Production Company, Llc, PubRes
Sales
Athanor - Film Production Company, Llc
Screenplay
Adam Olha, Jan Daňhel
Cinematography
Adam Olha
Editor
Jan Daňhel
Sound Design
Ivo Špalj, Tobiáš Potočný