Competition | Chicago Reader

Competition

Milos Forman's first feature (1963) combines two early shorts, If There Were No Music and Competition. Dave Kehr wrote that the two shorts “already show Forman's peculair and effective way or playing the sentimentality of his material against the cold, mock-documentary irony of his camera work. If There Were No Music, about two young musicians who can't accept the discipline of their bandleader, reflects a theme that was to occupy some of Forman's subsequent films—the breakdown of the institution's power over the individual.” Don Druker wrote that the second short “reveals Forman's skill at capturing the special problems and quirks of young people. It details the attempts of thousands of young girls to win a singing assignment at the Semafor Theater in Prague (a motif repeated to great effect in the rock singer tryouts of Taking Off). A marvelous look at a burgeoning talent.” 77 min.

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