MHM Film Club: “The Shop on Main Street” (1965)


The Shop on Main Street (1965) 125 mins (English subtitles)
Directed by Ján Kadár and Elmar Klos

An inept Czech peasant is torn between greed and guilt when the Nazi-backed bosses of his town appoint him “Aryan controller” of an old Jewish widow’s button shop.

Humor and tragedy fuse in this scathing exploration of one cowardly man’s complicity in the horrors of a totalitarian regime. Made near the height of Soviet oppression in Czechoslovakia, The Shop on Main Street features intense editing and camera work which won it the Academy Award™ for Best Foreign Film in 1965 and a Best Actress Nomination for Yiddish Theatre star Ida Kaminska.

In partnership with the Processes of Signification Emerging Research Group (PSERG), Deakin University.