Martyrs of Love

short-story

Typology

feature

Czech title

Mučedníci lásky

Country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1966

Production year

1966

Premiere

21.04.1967

Language version

Czech

Director

Jan Němec

Screenplay

Jan Němec, Ester Krumbachová

Screenstory

Jan Němec, Ester Krumbachová

Summary

This three-part tragicomedy from 1966 was the brainchild of director Jan Němec – the “enfant terrible” of the 1960s Czechoslovak New Wave – and screenwriter and costume designer Ester Krumbachová. Released at the same time as Němec’s legendary O slavnosti a hostech (The Party and the Guests, 1966), it was meant to clear his mind following a run of demanding experimentation. Yet, the three loosely connected variations on the theme of unhappy love can’t hide the author’s inherently provocative streak, already evident in his 1964 film Démanty noci (Diamonds of the Night) on which Krumbachová likewise participated (contributing as the costume designer). This tentatively received film would prove to be the last made by Němec in his homeland for a very long time. In the story entitled Pokušení manipulanta (Temptation of a Man-in-Charge), a young manipulative man throws himself into the vortex of the big city in an attempt to fight his loneliness. Although he meets a pretty girl in a postman’s cap (singer Marta Kubišová), in the end nothing comes of the encounter. In Nastěnčiny sny (Nastěnka’s Dreams), a girl working as dishwasher in a restaurant car daydreams about meeting a handsome man. The story entitled Dobrodružství sirotka Rudolfa (Adventures of Rudolf the Orphan) follows the orphan Rudolf, who finds himself at a party in an elegant villa. There he meets an obliging beauty. The next day, however, he discovers he can no longer locate the villa. The three protagonists – martyrs of love – who all meet on the street at the conclusion of the film, are, as it happens, not the kind of people who can break free from their isolation… For the manipulator’s role, Němec chose Petr Kopřiva (this was Kopřiva’s debut), who would afterwards appear in Antonín Máša’s Hotel pro Cizince (Hotel For Strangers, 1966), Evald Schorm’s Farářův konec (The End Of A Priest, 1968) and, above all, as Orlík, the main character’s brother, in Jaromil Jireš’s Valerie a Týden divů (Valery’s Week of Wonders, 1970). Nastěnka was played by Hana Kuberová, who following this appearance would make only one further, and only brief, appearance, in Miloš Forman’s Hoří, má panenko (Firemen’s Ball, 1967). The part of Rudolf was performed by choreographer Josef Koníček. Němec also found interesting placements for lesser and minor roles: composer and occasional actor Jan Klusák played one of Nastěnka’s suitors and the wanton “Daisies”, Jitka Cerhová and Ivana Karbanová, clearly wandered into Mučedníci lásky from the film by Věra Chytilová. The “roles” of the musicians are taken by the musical elite of that period (including Eva Olmerová, Laco Dészi, Ferdinand Havlík and Jan Hammer Jr.).

Synopsis

Three short stories.

Cast

Petr Kopřiva

manipulant

Marta Kubišová

dívka s poštovní čepicí

Hana Kuberová

Nastěnka

Jan Klusák

lékař-důstojník

Karel Gott

zpívající posel

Josef Koníček

sirotek Rudolf

Denisa Dvořáková

bledá dívka

Zdeněk Fanta

první muž

Pavel Bošek

druhý muž

Miloň Novotný

další muž

Alena Čepková

dáma

Olga Světelská

elegantní dívka

Jiří Mucha

muž s chrty

Marta Kadlečíková

žena s cigaretovou špičkou

Inka Zemánková

zpěvačka na plese

Eva Olmerová

zpěvačka v baru

Jiří Verberger

hudebník-klavír

Pavel Vitoch

hudebník-basová trubka

Ferdinand Havlík

hudebník-saxofon

Eugen Jegorov

hudebník-saxofon

Karel Pilar

hudebník-saxofon

Laco Déczi

hudebník-trubka

Jan Hammer ml.

hudebník-klavír

Miroslav Vitouš

hudebník-basa

Laco Tropp

hudebník-bicí

Jaroslav Boťa

hudebník-basa

Milan Tesař (2)

hudebník-kytara

Zdeněk Bruderhans

hudebník-flétna

Jitka Cerhová

rozpustilá dívka

Ivana Karbanová

rozpustilá dívka

Antonín Bahenský

Vlasta Bambulová

Jana Dufková

Libor Fára

Šárka Horáčková

Míla Hotový

Pavel Jaderník

Marie Jančová

Jiřina Jandová

Herbert Kisza

Zdena Korčáková

Jan Krumbach

Ela Květoňová

Jana Lauferová

Emanuel Pejška

Irena Pejšková

Antonín Pražák

Jiří Reichel

Marie Simínová

Marie Sixtová

Miloš Šafránek

Jana Ševčíková (2)

Karel Volf

Roman Weiss

Crew and creators

Director

Jan Němec

Second Unit Director

Jiří Mikeťuk

Assistant Director

Marie Kaplanová, Alena Mikeťuková

Second Unit Photography

Eduard Kadeřábek

Camera Operator

Čestmír Církva

Production Designer

Oldřich Bosák

Art Director

Ester Krumbachová

Set Designer

Jiří Drégr, Jaroslav Chytrý, Jiří Cvrček

Costume Designer

Ester Krumbachová

Film Editor

Miroslav Hájek

Sound Designer

František Fabián

Production Manager

Věra Kadlecová

Unit Production Manager

Eva Kučerová, Václav Havlík

Unit Production Manager

Vladimír Tišer

Cooperation

Jarmila Knížková, Jitka Šulcová, Bohumil Nový

Music

Music Composed by

Jan Klusák, Karel Mareš

Music Performed by

FISYO

Music Conducted by

Štěpán Koníček (FISYO)

Songs

Jakube, Jakube, Přítelkyně má, Neboť, co je to člověk

Songwriter

Karel Mareš (Jakube, Jakube), Jan Klusák (Přítelkyně má), Karel Mareš (Neboť, co je to člověk)

Writer of Lyrics

Ester Krumbachová (Jakube, Jakube), Ester Krumbachová (Přítelkyně má), Ester Krumbachová (Neboť, co je to člověk)

Singer

Marta Kubišová (Jakube, Jakube), Karel Gott (Přítelkyně má), Marta Kubišová (Neboť, co je to člověk), Jiří Verberger, Eva Olmerová, Inka Zemánková

Production info

Original Title

Mučedníci lásky

English Title

Martyrs of Love

Copyright

1966

Production Year

1966

Premiere

21.04.1967

Creative Group

Novotný – Kubala, Bedřich Kubala, Ladislav Novotný

Technical info

Format

35mm , Betacam

Versions

Czech

Awards

Vítěz

Event: Ceny Trilobit 1966

1967
Praha / Czechoslovakia
Ester Krumbachová

Vítěz

Event: Ceny Trilobit 1966

1967
Praha / Czechoslovakia
Jan Němec