Ecce Homo Homolka

comedy

Typology

feature

Czech title

Ecce homo Homolka

Runtime

80

Country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1969

Production year

1969

Premiere

08.03.1970

Language version

Czech

Director

Jaroslav Papoušek

Screenplay

Jaroslav Papoušek

Screenstory

Jaroslav Papoušek

Summary

Director Jaroslav Papoušek’s earlier tragicomedy Nejkrásnější věk (The Most Beautiful Age, 1968), set in a sculpture studio, was very much in the mould of a free-thinking, free-speaking Czechoslovak New Wave film. A year later, he embarked upon the folk comedy Ecce homo Homolka (1969). Following the departure into exile of directors Miloš Forman and director-screenwriter Ivan Passer, Papoušek was the last member of this strongly bonded trio to remain behind. During the 1960s, the three men brought to the screen a number of highly successful film projects. Papoušek’s film, utilising a Latin phrase, is closely associated with Forman’s merciless study of the Czech character Hoří má panenko (Firemen’s Ball, 1967). Unlike with Passer, whose stand-alone Intimní osvětlení (Intimate Lighting, 1965) demonstrates a sympathy for his provincial central character, Papoušek’s tragicomic Ecce homo Homolka is more inclined towards Forman’s cynical, sarcastic tones. The hedonistic Homolková family departs Prague for a Sunday trip to the countryside. But they are forced to return home early by a woman’s voice calling – fruitlessly – for help. While grandpa prepares for a game of football, the rest of the family – the resolute grandmother, corpulent Heduš, her rather wimpy husband Ludva, and two naughty young twins – head out on an alternative trip to Chuchle to “see the horses”. But nothing quite manages to turn out as planned – and the Homolkas' Sunday ends full of self-pity and recriminations… This accomplished feature, which charts the life of one simple Czech family, benefits from memorable dialogue, classic moments, and distinctive characters. The cast boasts strong performances from the likes of Josef Šebánek, Helena Růžičková, František Husák and Marie Motlová. Matěj and Petr Forman (sons of Miloš) play the twins. Two years later, Papoušek directed a loosely-inspired sequel called Hogo fogo Homolka (Hogo Fogo Homolka, 1970); and a year after that, the trilogy was completed with Homolka a tobolka (Homolka and the Purse, 1972). Given the growing pressures that were being exerted by the regime on Barrandov filmmakers, it is widely viewed that the quality of this trilogy declined with each sequel.

Synopsis

It is a beautiful Sunday and the Homolka family are having a picnic in a forest not far from Prague. The grandfather and grandmother have settled comfortably in the grass, their son Ludva romps about in the river with his two young twin sons and his podgy wife Heduš dances among the trees, while the beer gets cooled in the water. A young couple embrace in the nearby bushes. A voice of a woman calling for help disturbs the idyll. Masses of people, unnoticed until now, begin to leave the forest in haste. The Homolka family returns to their shared flat in Prague. The meal, which would have been delicious in the forest, seems somewhat improvised at home. The grandmother, twins and Heduš set off for Chuchle to watch horse races. The grandfather gets ready to watch a game of football and Ludva, who could not persuade Heduš to join him in watching this "male" game, is forced to join his family on their excursion. He gets drunk at a stand in Chuchle and this has terrible consequences. Exhausted by the hangover, Ludva becomes a witness and co-conspirator in a number of disastrous squabbles and settling of wrongdoings among the members of his family. Their TV set breaks down, and the family is left to its own resources. The grandfather has to make the double bed after he has messed it up, and this ruins his high spirits after the football. The grandmother burns the steaks she was frying for dinner black. The Sunday is over. Heduš cries because she is fat and unhappy, the grandmother joins in, and the men are miserable to have made such failures of their marriages. The two couples finally dance to Beethoven's Ode to Joy, which is heard on the radio.

Cast

Josef Šebánek

děda Homolka

Marie Motlová

babi Homolková

František Husák

Ludva, syn Homolkových

Helena Růžičková

Heduš, snacha Homolkových

Petr Forman

dvojče Péťa, vnuk Homolkových

Matěj Forman

dvojče Máťa, vnuk Homolkových

Yvonne Kodoňová

Pavlínka

Jiří Dědík

muž v aerovce

Růžena Pružinová

sousedka Suchánková

Karel Fridrich

muž v okně

Julie Kučerová-Nezavdalová

brýlatá stařenka v lese

Crew and creators

Second Unit Director

Milan Muchna

Assistant Director

Helena Pokorná

Shooting Script

Jaroslav Papoušek

Script Editor

Václav Šašek

Second Unit Photography

Pavel Dosoudil

Camera Operator

Jiří Zavřel

Production Designer

Karel Černý

Set Designer

Jaroslav Česal, Karel Kočí, Bohuslav Varhaník

Sound Designer

Adolf Böhm

Production Manager

Rudolf Hájek

Unit Production Manager

František Jaderník, Jaroslav Vlk

Unit Production Manager

Antonín Kubový

Cooperation

Dagmar Ševčíková, Eva Horázná, Miloš Červinka

Music

Music Composed by

Karel Mareš

Selected Music

Ludwig van Beethoven (Symfonie č. 9 d moll /Óda na radost/)

Music Performed by

FISYO, skupina Rudolfa Rokla

Music Conducted by

Štěpán Koníček (FISYO)

Songs

Lásko, bože, lásko

Songwriter

lidová píseň (Lásko, bože, lásko)

Production info

Original Title

Ecce homo Homolka

English Title

Ecce Homo Homolka

Copyright

1969

Production Year

1969

Premiere

08.03.1970

Creative Group

Šebor – Bor, Vladimír Bor, Jiří Šebor

Technical info

Format

Betacam, DVD

Versions

Czech

Awards

Vítěz

Event: 1. výroční ceny DAVID pro nejlepší DVD video roku 2004 – DVD Group.cz

2005
Praha / Czech Republic
BONTONFILM a.s.

Vítěz

Event: 1. výroční ceny DAVID pro nejlepší DVD video roku 2004 – DVD Group.cz

2005
Praha / Czech Republic
BONTONFILM a.s.

Vítěz

Event: 1. výroční ceny DAVID pro nejlepší DVD video roku 2004 – DVD Group.cz

2005
Praha / Czech Republic
Euro Digital Center

Vítěz

Event: 1. výroční ceny DAVID pro nejlepší DVD video roku 2004 – DVD Group.cz

2005
Praha / Czech Republic
Martin Ježek