On Kundera and Other Things

Yes Pavel, I have watched Kaufman’s The Unbearable Lightness of Being (1988), and was a little surprised that it should be an American production, and filmed in France. I also re-read The Joke, and realized that any understanding that I may thought I had hangs upon the thinnest of threads. There are things that are surprisingly easy to communicate across different nationalities and backgrounds, but then, there are those details or depth that will never be fully be expressed nor understood.

Some narratives of Ludvik remind me of Tim Burton’s drawings, especially the ones drawn in his earlier days, depicting the inherent awkwardness of youth. From when do we become responsible for our many faces?

The young can’t help acting; they’re immature but they’re placed in a mature world and have to act as if they were mature. So they put on whatever masks and disguises appeal to them and can be made to fit — and they act.

I will not present any of Kim Ki-duk’s works as a possible counterpart that I may offer in return for the suggestion of the movie – his images of women are (as some say Kundera’s women are) discomforting. I would offer Memories of Murder (2003) or The Attorney (2013) instead.

Žert also reminds me of Park Jung-geun’s joke and his imprisonment, the citizen that we all failed to protect from the horrors of the long-dead Cold War, and to whom we must beg to be forgiven.


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