What kind of private life do dissidents pursued as terrorists live? What happened to the resistance fighters of communist Czechoslovakia after the breakdown of the Soviet Union? The documentary Velvet Terrorists, created by a group of directors, investigates these and similar questions by portraying three men, who were involved in attempts to disrupt the totalitarian single-party state or its symbols after 1968. Stano, for instance, was caught attempting to place a bag full of explosives under the grandstand of a May Day demonstration – only his drunkenness prevented the success of the plot. Today, after some years in prison, he is a construction worker. In his free time, he likes to go fishing. Or is on the lookout for love. The imaginative mise-en-scène adds a further amount of irony to the mens' already bizarre lives. The (anti-)heroes are given the opportunity to reenact their secret operations that had previously failed. In doing so, they express their romantic ideals of freedom as well as their secret agent fantasies and their readiness to use violence. However, despite the satirical undercurrent, Velvet Terrorists takes its protagonists quite seriously. The focus is on their problems and hopes – both in terms of political cohabitation in a wider context and with respect to their interpersonal relationships on the small scale.


Peter Kerekes

Peter Kerekes

Director Velvet Terrorists

Ivan Ostrochovsky

Ivan Ostrochovsky

Director Velvet Terrorists

Velvet Terrorists

Original Title

Zamatoví teroristi


Pavol Pekarčík, Ivan Ostrochovský, Peter Kerekes


Pavol Pekarčík, Ivan Ostrochovský, Peter Kerekes




Documentary Competition

Country and Year

Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Croatia 2013


Slovak, Czech, engl. subtitles

Running time

87 min


Friday 10.10.

20:45 Actors Studio 1

Saturday 11.10.

21:30 Actors Studio 3