The Firemen's Ball Reviews

September 18, 2017
In 1967, the year before Soviet tanks rampaged through Czechoslovakia, the Czech director Milos Forman subtly, scathingly used the premise of a quaint provincial party to mock the Party.
September 19, 2014
With Loves of a Blonde, it's the best work Forman's done, rooted in a social reality that has eluded him in his American projects.
Top Critic
September 19, 2014
A delicious parody-fable of Slavic bureaucracy.
November 17, 2011
Quietly, irresistibly funny in the early Forman manner (this was his first film in colour); but the belated switch to allegorical satire seems altogether too sour in the context.
March 26, 2009
Forman has cannily used a bevy of non-actors to flesh out a practically plotless vehicle, a lively, brimming comedy on human conduct and smalltown life.
December 10, 2008
The nonprofessional actors, hammy slapstick and overwrought politics make it a better conversation piece than viewing experience.
May 9, 2005
A hilarious shaggy dog story, with the pessimism of the exquisite logic that leads nowhere.
August 20, 2002
It is a relief to find a director who doesn't force his material, who trusts us to understand what's funny without being told.
July 24, 2001
Forman's film is a simply observed, broadly comical account of a gala held by a small town's fire brigade to honour the 86th birthday of their past leader.