Tonka of the Gallows

drama

Typology

feature

Czech title

Tonka Šibenice

Runtime

82

Country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1930

Production year

1929 – 1930

Premiere

27.02.1930

Language version

Czech, German, French

Director

Karel Anton

Screenplay

Benno Vigny, Willy Haas

Synopsis

Country girl Tonka, after arriving in Prague, becomes a prostitute in a brothel. But she misses home. When she gets time off she goes back to see her mother. At home she meets her former boyfriend Jan again. He still loves her and wants to marry her. Tonka is content with him but is tormented by memories of her whorehouse past. She does not want to make Jan - who does not suspect she is a harlot - unhappy and so she returns to the bordello in Prague. The police arrive in search of a prostitute who is willing to spend the night with a condemned murderer who is to be executed the following morning. Tonka feels sorry for the doomed man and agrees to sleep with him. But when she goes back to the brothel afterwards, everybody spurns her contemptuously. She is thrown out and starts to walk the streets, sinking ever lower into depravity. One day Tonka sees Jan who has come to Prague to look for her. In her confusion Tonka gets involved in a vicious street fight and is shoved into the path of a hackney carriage. Mortally injured, she dies in Jan's arms.

Note

The film was made as a silent movie. A sound track was added in France after a fire at Kavalírka. Versions of the film were also made in German and French. Only a French version with the distribution title Tonischka is stored at the National Film Archive, in the Czech version 15,0 m of the prologue only is preserved in which Karel Hašler sings the song Hradčany krásné.

Cast

Ita Rina

prostitutka zvaná Tonka Šibenice

Vera Baranovskaja

Tončina matka

Josef Rovenský

odsouzený vrah Prokůpek

Jindřich Plachta

drožkář

Antonie Nedošinská

majitelka nevěstince

Emilie Nitschová

prodavačka kaštanů

Rudolf Štěpán

mistr popravčí

Felix Kühne

hausírník

Theodor Pištěk

opilec/on sám v prologu

Jan Sviták

pasák

Karel Jelínek

návštěvník v nevěstinci

Eliška Jílková

služka u majitelky nevěstince

Josef Kytka

první tajný

V. Mecera

druhý tajný

Václav Rabský

vězeňský dozorce

Ada Velický

host v hospodě

Jan Marek

host v hospodě

Karel Hašler

on sám v prologu, zpěvák

Erno Košťál

on sám v prologu, klavírista

Crew and creators

Director

Karel Anton

Based on

Egon Erwin Kisch (Nanebevstoupení Tonky Šibenice – povídka)

Production Designer

Hanuš Gödert, František Poneš

Film Editor

Karel Anton

Sound Designer

Herrmann S. Heller

Music

Music Composed by

Erno Košťál

Songs

Hradčany krásné, Když v Praze padá první sníh, Pryč a pryč je všecko, Už mou milou do kostela vedou, Išla Marína od Hodonína, Lásko, bože, lásko

Songwriter

Karel Hašler (Hradčany krásné), Karel Hašler (Když v Praze padá první sníh)

Writer of Lyrics

Karel Hašler (Hradčany krásné), Karel Hašler (Když v Praze padá první sníh)

Singer

Karel Hašler (Hradčany krásné), Karel Hašler (Když v Praze padá první sníh)

Production info

Original Title

Tonka Šibenice

English Title

Tonka of the Gallows

Parallel Title

Tonischka / Die Galgentoni

Copyright

1930

Production Year

1929 – 1930

Premiere

27.02.1930

Production

Karel Anton

Copyright Holders

Národní filmový archiv

Distribution

Elekta

Technical info

Versions

Czech, German, French