Top Pick: She Kept Crying for the Moon

Milka Zimková, the screenwriter and the main character of the Slovak movie She Kept Crying for the Moon (1982), had an advantage over other actresses. She played a character easy to identify with: a single mother in a small village. Zimková played the role so well that she won the best actress award at the 1983 Czechoslovak Film Festival.
Set in eastern Slovakia, Johanka (played by Zimková), lives in a small house with her strange brother and works at the local cooperative farm. When a well-digger discovers water in their garden (a hope Johanka had given up on), her joy turns to passion for the well-digger, who leaves her pregnant. Alone, she gives birth to a daughter named Pavlínka.


Milka Zimková (left) plays a single mother in eastern Slovakia in the 1983 Czechoslovak film.
photo: Slovak Film Institute

Milka Zimková, the screenwriter and the main character of the Slovak movie She Kept Crying for the Moon (1982), had an advantage over other actresses. She played a character easy to identify with: a single mother in a small village. Zimková played the role so well that she won the best actress award at the 1983 Czechoslovak Film Festival.

Set in eastern Slovakia, Johanka (played by Zimková), lives in a small house with her strange brother and works at the local cooperative farm. When a well-digger discovers water in their garden (a hope Johanka had given up on), her joy turns to passion for the well-digger, who leaves her pregnant. Alone, she gives birth to a daughter named Pavlínka.

Dealing with the prejudices a single mother in a small village faces, Johanka strives to provide for her daughter while teaching her to avoid the mistake she made. The tragicomedy captures the mentality and uniqueness of eastern Slovakia, which has a different way of life and dialect. Directed by Štefan Uher, the film was a huge success in the former Czechoslovak state.

Zimková turned 50 this month. When asked last summer, which role that she played has remained with her in real life, she said: "They all are mixed up in a special symbiosis. If I wanted to analyse it, I'd get lost. Each role connects to the other. I am a housewife, and right now I have fruit on my table waiting to be preserved and a new screenplay in process."

Thus, while the main actor in the movie might well be stewing fruit this summer, visitors can view her in the 1983 film at Charlie Centrum on Špitálska 4, at 20:00 from August 27 to 31. Tickets cost 53 Sk. Tel: 02/5296-3396. The film will be shown in Slovak with English subtitles.

By Zuzana Habšudová

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