Kafka for Kids

Roee Rosen

P&I Selection 2022

  • 111'
  • Israel
  • 2022

Basically, Kafka’s Metamorphosis is unfilmable. After all, the author didn’t want visual representations to appear of the insect Gregor Samsa turned into; readers should visualise that themselves.

This complicates things for the makers of Kafka for Kids. In this children’s programme, a grandad figure in a bathrobe reads the story to a woman who, with exaggerated naivety, plays a little girl in pigtails in a ladybird print dress. While the former talks about Samsa’s transformation, the event is depicted in expressionist animations. Is that allowed? Who can provide legal advice? The band with their children’s instruments in the corner know. “Kafka’s shoe!” they sing.

Weird? Surreal? You bet. There is so much to take in. One surprise is followed by another in Kafka for Kids. Just think, for instance, of the brightly coloured backdrop in which Mr Table and Mrs Lamp have faces and get involved in everything. Or, the wondrous intermezzos about food. American-Israeli artist Roee Rosen has created a witty parody of children’s TV, with a fun Kafkaesque twist that nevertheless takes his work seriously and underlines its playful, surreal nature. While the programme increasingly loses the plot, Rosen questions laws and definitions, to subsequently apply these to the occupied territories. Politics, philosophy, and a talking painting: fun for funny adults.

Director
Roee Rosen
Country of production
Israel
Production Year
2022
Festival Edition
P&I Selection 2022
Length
111'
Medium
DCP
Original title
Kafka le-ktanim
Languages
English, Hebrew
Producers
Roee Rosen, Max Lomberg
Sales
Roee Rosen
Screenplay
Roee Rosen
Cinematography
Avner Shahaf
Editor
Max Lomberg
Production Design
Roee Rosen
Music
Igor Krutogolov
Cast
Hani Furstenberg, Jeff Francis, Eli Gornstein, Yum Umi, Yifeat Ziv, Yiftach Mizrach, Orna Katz