To serve God or the State, is the decision young students at a seminary must face in this thrilling, impressive period drama.

Described by one critic as ‘Iron Curtain noir’, Ivan Ostrochovský’s immersive exploration of paranoia in Soviet-controlled former Czechoslovakia follows the lives of seminary students who find themselves caught between their spiritual calling and demands that they act as surveillance for the secret police. Opening with the disposal of an unidentified body before taking us back ‘143 days earlier’, Ostrochovský’s film shivers with the ghosts of Europe’s authoritarian past as it details the journey of best friends Juraj (Samuel Skyva) and Michal (Samuel Polakovič), who enrol at the seminary completely ignorant of its collusive activities with the State.

Shot in crisp black and white, Ostrochovský has creating an impressive historical thriller and a warning of what lies in wait should we allow the world to slip back into the authoritarian tendencies that once divided Europe.

Directed by
Runtime 80 Minutes
Release date 2021