Vabamu launches ‘Revolutions That Led to Freedom’ film nights

A new series of film nights will kick off at Vabamu on 1 October, focussing on the political and social upheaval in Central and Eastern Europe 30 years ago that led to the collapse of the Communist regimes that had ruled for half a century and to an ever more successful wave of European democratisation. Admission to film nights is free of charge.


In cooperation with embassies, Vabamu will be screening the stories of nine countries’ striving for independence and desire to break free from the chains of Communist regimes over a succession of evenings this October and November. Coupled with introductory discussions, these stories will be told in both feature films and documentaries.


The opening film in the series, which will be shown on 1 October at 18:00, is the emotional Slovakian documentary Paper Heads (1995).

Through archive materials, eyewitness accounts and scripted performances it provides an overview of the relationship between individuals and the powers-that-be in a totalitarian society, forming a mosaic-like testimony of the human rights abuses in Czechoslovakia from 1945-1989. First and foremost, however, it is a unique reflection of freedom and of the repression of ordinary people.  


While the first film in the series will be screened on a Tuesday (1 October), subsequent screenings will take place at 18:00 on Wednesday nights throughout October and November.

Films from Lithuania and Poland will introduce audiences to resistance through rock music, while documentaries from Latvia and Ukraine will showcase the fight for freedom through political protest. Also being shown as part of the series is Quod erat demonstrandum, which focusses on repression in Romania in the early 1980s, and Bolse vita, which examines the problems facing a society in transition in the case of Hungary in the late 1980s. There will also be a German film looking at the fall of the Berlin Wall from a more humorous perspective. The series will end with a film about former Czech president Václav Havel’s wife Olga.


Films are screened with English subtitles.

Admission is free of charge.