PONGO CALLING (Czech Republic/Slovakia/Great Britain, 2022, 78′)
XXX X ottobre, ore XX.XX, Cinema Massimo, Sala X
Direction, screenplay, photography: Tomas Kratochvíl
Editing: Marek Bihun
Music: Jonatan Pastircak
Sound: Michal Horvath
Production: Produkce Radim Prochazka, HITCHHIKER Cinema
Written, filmed and directed by the Czech filmmaker Tomás Kratochvíl, Pongo Calling is the portrait of the Roma truck driver ?tefan Pongo, who emigrated to the United Kingdom with his family. When the Czech president affirms that Roma people are reluctant to work, ?tefan launches an appeal on Facebook asking for photos of Roma people who work. He became a famous media figure, he created a volunteer agency and fought a battle that brought him to Brussels Parliament. His mission was abruptly interrupted by his death at 50 years old. The film pays tribute to him.
Tomás Kratochvíl (Brno, Czech Republic, 1983) graduated from Charles University and then he attended the famous school of cinema FAMU in Prague. In 2012 he co-directed Hives, a collective film born from the collaboration of five European schools of cinema. With Gadjo he described his six months spent in a Roma community excluded by the society. The following Czechs Against Czechs is an ideal continuation of the preceding film. Social and racial requests are at the heart of Hostels, while in Refugees the director pretends to be a refugee to show the dramatic condition of the fleeing people on the Turkish border. With Classmates, Kratochvíl returned to talk about the already existing divisions in Czech society and with Pongo Calling of Roma people. For Czech TV he created the documentary mini series Masters of the Crafts on craftsmen who repoìroduce historical artifacts with modern methods. Then he created environmental and historical documentaries for his Country’s TV.
Filmography: Hives (episode Prague, 2012), Gadjo (doc., 2014), Hostels (doc., 2015), Czechs Against Czechs (doc., 2015), Refugees (doc., 2016), Classmates (doc., 2017), Pongo Calling (doc., 2022), Masters of the Crafts (doc., TV mini series, 2023).