Synopsis by David Lewis
Zem Spieva (The Earth Sings, or, The Earth is Singing) was filmed at the annual Harvest Festival in Slovakia in 1933. It was an attempt to capture on sound film the essence of rural Slovak folk culture, and one that was particularly successful in its time, as it won in the documentary category in the first Venice Bienniale in 1934. However the film was practically unknown outside of Czechoslovakia until 2002, when a print of Zem Spieva was remarkably discovered by a collector at a garage sale in Chicago. The American Film Institute accepted the film, restored it, and now 70 years after it was made, Zem Spieva is making its way again through the capitals of Europe to wide critical acclaim.