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The Lust for Power

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by Tereza Nvotová

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Lust for Power an HBO Europe documentary made by the young director Tereza Nvotova is the story of Slovak ex-politician Vladimir Meciar and the impact he's had on Slovak society and her own life. The story begins in 1989 when she's a one year old and the Velvet Revolution is about to bring down the communist regime in Czechoslovakia. Following their victory, almost none of the revolutionary leaders want to occupy important government positions. They organize an open call for the position of Minister of Interior, and an unknown lawyer from a small town, Vladimir Meciar, vies for the job. He wins and proceeds to rise to the very top. While governing he becomes a benevolent dictator, ruling the country using tools of corruption, propaganda and organized crime. While events like the division of Czechoslovakia or the kidnapping of the President's son unfold, Tereza and her friends are playing children's games of politics casting Meciar in the lead role. The documentary Lust for Power doesn't only cover one chapter in Slovak political history. It raises universal and very current questions, because Meciar-like political archetypes keep popping up all over the world. Are we ever going to find out, why we tend to put blind faith in authoritarian leaders?

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