his three-part ballad, which often uses music to stand in for dialogue, remains the most perfect embodiment of Nemec’s vision of a film world independent of reality. Mounting a defense of timid, inhibited, clumsy, and unsuccessful individuals, the three protagonists are a complete antithesis of the industrious heroes of socialist aesthetics. Martyrs of Love cemented Nemec’s reputation as the kind of unrestrained nonconformist the Communist establishment considered the most dangerous to their ideology.

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