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Slovak Studies Program

Martin Votruba


Jánošík (1921)







The popular folk theme of robbing the rich to give to the poor, cherished from England to Korea, found its way to the first Slovak film through the Jánošík legend. In the clip, a sudden cut transports the title character (Theodor Pištěk) and his highwaymen, nicknamed "mountain lads," from their axiomatic place of abode to one of their lore-favored robbing locales and platforms to admonish about injustice – a nobleman's mansion on a festive occasion. While the lead heartthrob's overblown acting – gestures, facial expressions, eye movement – was the norm in silent movies in an effort to compensate for the lack of a supporting soundtrack, and for poor film stock and projection, contemporary reviews griped that some of the others' acting was rather wooden. Compare Jánošík 1935 and Jánošík 2009.


Jánošík (1921) summary.


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