City Paper is not for tourists
Honoring the legendary director Miloš Forman, who turns 80 this year, the National Gallery will showcase the famed auteur’s early work, including his initial Hollywood films (a three-hour director’s cut of Amadeus, anyone?). Nothing during this period better showcases Forman’s transgressive charms than 1967’s The Fireman’s Ball, a naturalistic look at the folly of trumped-up authority and societal affectations. Forman has maintained that the film isn’t overtly political—it caused a stir upon release and resulted in his leaving his native Czechoslovakia shortly thereafter—but rather an idea born from his serendipitous attendance of an actual fireman’s ball. Regardless of his intent, the film’s deft satire remains razor-sharp.