The documentary by Czech director Jan Gebert depicts the frightening, yet sometimes involuntarily funny image of Slovenskí Branci, the “Slovak recruits”: a paramilitary organisation, established by 18-year-old Peter Švrček and a few like-minded people (maniacs, one might want to call them, but it’s not that easy). Peter is a decent and law-abiding young citizen who believes his generation lacks discipline and “leadership”. To remedy this grievance, he organises very special weekend activities in the Slovak forests, which are intended to provide young natives with paramilitary training and a hierarchical group structure. In “official” terms, the group doesn’t exist as it might be banned, but one can’t really be certain about that either. In conversations, Švrček is always correct and wouldn’t allow himself extremist statements, but it is quite obvious that he has nothing but contempt for the Slovak state and for the “left” and the “liberals”. Jan Gebert accompanies the ambitious young man and recruit Adam, who rises within the Slovenskí Branciin the course of filming. At close range, the director shows their inconspicuous everyday life, private moments and the ambitions of this troupe, which acts deeply anti-European.

Winner of the Documentary Film Competition: When the War Comes

Original Title

Až přijde válka


Jan Gebert


Documentary Competition


Documentary Competition, Winner






Slovak with Engl. sub.

Running time

76 min.


Sunday 22.04.

18:30 Actors Studio 3