A Cage for Two

Country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1967

Production year

1967

Premiere

6 March 1968

Runtime

85 min

Category

film

Genre

narrative

Typology

featuretheatrical distributionlong

Original title

Klec pro dva

Czech title

Klec pro dva

English title

A Cage for Two

Summary

Vladimír Menšík reached the height of his popularity in the second half of the 1960s, as evidenced by the great number and variety of projects with which he became involved. Czech cinema audiences in 1967 could enjoy no less than nine films starring the popular actor. Among the best of these are the historical romance Marketa Lazarová (Marketa Lazarová, 1967) directed by František Vláčil and the experimental comedy Happy end (Happy End, 1967). The love story Klec pro dva (A Cage for Two, 1967) remains somewhat in their shadow but is nevertheless an admirable vehicle for Menšík’s talents. He plays the role of a print shop labourer who has been caring for his mentally ill mother (Marie Rosůlková) at some cost to the quality of his own life. Menšík delivers another of his intimately portrayed commoner heroes who is taken by surprise when romance suddenly appears. The forty-something bachelor falls for the charms of the pretty thief Kristýna (Consuela Morávková). Without too much drama, director Jaroslav Mach presents a simple morality tale about the possibility of personal improvement through love.

Synopsis

Forty-year old Čenda is a confirmed bachelor. He shares a flat with his mentally ill mother and their morose lodger Martin, an actor. His mother's illness started years ago, after her husband, Čenda's father, died suddenly, and now her son looks after her with great care. The quiet and withdrawn man works in the basement storage room of a large printing works in the centre of Prague. To his irritation, he is the centre of attention among the unmarried women at work. One day his mother dies. Čenda is all alone now and doesn't know what to do with this new freedom. In the evening, he orders his philandering colleague Honza out of his flat, together with the two drunken girls the colleague has brought with him. One day, a strange pretty girl comes to the storage room down the goods elevator, carrying a load of paper. Kristýna is looking for a place to hide from unknown pursuers. Čenda takes care of her and finally even invites her home. He suspects nothing about the girl's shady past, and the fact that she is hiding from her fellow crooks. Pleased to have someone to look after, Čenda buys the girl clothes and plenty of gifts. The gang find Kristýna and force her to steal things from Čenda's flat while he is away from home. The girl puts everything back but Čenda can still tell what has happened. He forgives Kristýna, whom he loves, and she confesses her love to him. Together, they make a Sunday trip to the countryside, and Čenda begins to make wedding plans. Kristýna decides to face up to her past first and surrenders voluntarily to the police.

Cast

Vladimír Menšík

skladník Čenda

Marie Rosůlková

Čendova matka

Jaroslav Marvan

herec Martin, Čendův podnájemník

Bohuš Záhorský

děda Müller, Čendův kolega

Jaroslava Obermaierová

Julina, dívka ze sazárny

Jan Skopeček

Honza, Čendův kolega

Jana Walterová

Zdena, dívka ze sazárny

František Vicena

číšník v kavárně

Rudolf Kudrnáč

otec křtěných dětí

Michaela Bendová

matka křtěných dětí

Vladimír Huber

opilý dědek

Věra Tichánková

sousedka Rampasová

Libuše Mincová

zpěvačka v kavárně

Vilda Marzin

číšník

Jana Drchalová

kadeřnice

Rudolf Kalina

kapitán SNB

Otto Ohnesorg

farář

Lena Birková

žena u rotačky

Marie Hübschová

květinářka

Marie Chmelařová

vedoucí orchestru

Milan Kindl

příslušník SNB v civilu

Jiří Mikota

příslušník VB

Robert Morávek

příslušník VB

Ela Šilarová

biletářka

Vladimír Zoubek

vedoucí automatu

Karla Kubištová

členka orchestru

Kroupová

členka orchestru

Surá

členka orchestru

Tarantová

členka orchestru

Herodková

členka orchestru

Crew and creators

Assistant Director

Lubomír Břinčil, Eliška Štíbrová, Zdenka Karlovská

Shooting Script

Jaroslav Mach

Script Editor

František Daniel

Director of Photography

Josef Hanuš

Second Unit Photography

Josef Pechar

Camera Operator

Jiří Pospíšil

Production Designer

Karel Černý

Set Designer

Jaroslav Ciboch, Vladimír Mácha

Costume Designer

Jan Kropáček

Film Editor

Zdeněk Stehlík

Sound Designer

Roman Hloch

Production Manager

Miloš Stejskal

Unit Production Manager

Jaroslav Koucký, Jaromír Kallista

Unit Production Manager

Antonín Navrátil

Cooperation

G. Mozolová, Miloslava Vojnová, Jiří Kotlář

Music

Music Composed by

Štěpán Lucký

Music Performed by

FISYO (Music Conducted by František Belfín), Emma Kovárnová

Songs

Requiem

Songwriter Bohuslav Ondráček
Writer of Lyrics Jan Schneider
Singer Eva Pilarová

Pepito mi corazón

Singer Libuše Mincová

Zahučaly hory, zahučaly lesy

Songwriter lidová píseň
Writer of Lyrics lidová píseň
Singer sbor

Production info

Original Title

Klec pro dva

Czech Title

Klec pro dva

English Title

A Cage for Two

Category

film

Typology

featuretheatrical distribution

Genre

narrative

Origin country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1967

Production Year

1967

Production specifications

literary Screenplay approved 15 February 1967
start of filming 4 May 1967
end of filming 18 June 1967
projection approval 7 November 1967

Premiere

premiere 6 March 1968

Studio

Hostivař

Creative Group

Tvůrčí skupina Feix – Brož, Miloš Brož (vedoucí dramaturg tvůrčí skupiny), Karel Feix (vedoucí výroby tvůrčí skupiny)

Technical info

Duration typology

feature film

Duration in minutes

85 min

Original length in metres

2 415 meters

Distribution carrier

35mm

Aspect ratio

1:1,37

Colour

black & white

Sound

sound

Sound system/format

mono

Versions

Czech

Dialogue languages

Czech

Subtitles languages

without subtitles

Opening/End credits languages

Czech