Oil Lamps

drama

Typology

feature

Czech title

Petrolejové lampy

Runtime

101

Country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1971

Production year

1971

Premiere

10/1971

Language version

Czech

Director

Juraj Herz

Screenplay

Václav Šašek, Lubor Dohnal, Juraj Herz

Summary

Czech filmmakers have several times been galvanised by the writings of Jaroslav Havlíček. The result in most cases was a film that merged the quality of the literary template and the personality of the particular filmmaker, whether it be Barbora Hlavsová (1942) directed by Martin Frič, Prokletí domu Hajnů (The Curse of the Hajns’ House, 1988) directed by Jiří Svoboda, or Jaromil Jireš’s Helimadoe (1992). However, the most famous adaptation of a Havlíček novel is the psychological drama Petrolejové lampy (Oil Lamps). The film is based on an eponymous novel first published in 1935 as Vyprahlé touhy (Parched Desires) and released again in 1944 following revisions and a change of title. The motion picture was made in 1971 according to a screenplay from Lubor Dohnal, Václav Šašek and Juraj Herz, the last of whom also directed the film. The director, who achieved fame in the 1960s with his excellent drama Spalovač mrtvol (The Cremator, 1968), made Petrolejové lampy into an expressive account of unfulfilled female desires. The main protagonist of the film, set in the early 20th century, is wealthy thirtysomething Štěpa Kiliánová, whose liberalism makes it difficult for her to find a suitor among her social circles in a small town. She ends up marrying her worldly cousin Pavel for whom she harbours a naïve admiration despite knowing that he is merely interested in the dowry. It is only after the wedding that Štěpa finds out that her husband suffers from syphilis. She’s now not only unable to have children, she’s also to suffer her husband’s physical and mental decline… The role of Štěpa was delivered by Iva Janžurová, 30 at the time, in one of her stand-out performances. Janžurová also starred in the main double role in Herz’s romantic drama Morgiana (1972). The actress found a worthy counterpart in Petr Čepek who performed Pavel as an impressive study of the devastation of a conquering, elegant manhood. In 2006, Herz directed a theatrical performance of Petrolejové lampy on the stage of Prague theatre Na Jezerce with Bára Hrzánová and Radek Holub in the two leading roles. In 2013, Radim Špaček and David Jařab recorded a theatrical performance of Petrolejové lampy, which Jařab staged with the Prague Chamber Theatre. The stars on this occasion were Karel Roden and Ivana Uhlířová.

Synopsis

As the only daughter of rich parents, in her mother's view thirty-year-old Miss Štěpa Kiliánová cannot be allowed to marry beneath her social station. But for small-town suitors the girl is too free-thinking and independent, for at the beginning of the 20th century absolute obedience to a husband is expected of wives. Štěpa wants to have children and marries her cousin Pavel, even though she knows that his main motive is her dowry, which will save his declining family estate. Only recently he was still an officer in Vienna, and greatly charmed Štěpa in his uniform. After the wedding there is no intimate harmony. The inexperienced woman gradually discovers that during his riotous earlier life he contracted syphilis and the untreated illness is beginning to change him. She buys him a rifle and a hunting forest, but soon the man is endangering the whole neighbourhood with his shooting. Progressive paralysis affects his gait and his intelligence. Štěpa angrily rejects the advances of the good-looking Jiří, whom Pavel has invited to the estate for her sake. After a while the now almost demented Pavel becomes the butt of ridicule on his promenades and finally ends up in a lunatic asylum. Sad Štěpa returns by train from visiting him. She does not know that the girl travelling with her in the compartment is Pavel's illegitimate daughter. Following the death of her mother she was supposed to be handed over to her father, but Pavel's brother Jan told the nun who was taking the little girl to the estate that Pavel was dead. Brother-in-law Jan plans to marry the future young widow and have his own children with her.

Film online

Cast

Iva Janžurová

Štěpa Kiliánová

Petr Čepek

poručík Pavel Malina

Marie Rosůlková

Kiliánová, matka Štěpy

Ota Sklenčka

stavitel Kilián, otec Štěpy

Vladimír Jedenáctík

Malina, Pavlův otec

Karel Chromík

Jan Malina, Pavlův bratr

Jana Plichtová

děvečka Manka

Karel Černoch

Synáček, Štěpin přítel

Josef Laufer

Xaver, Štěpin přítel

Stanislav Remunda

berní Groman

Jan Schánilec

důstojník Jiří, Pavlův přítel

Josef Červinka

dr. Hilmar

Míla Myslíková

Hilmarová

Václav Halama

kočí Hans

Václav Štekl

dirigent Mourek

Marie Motlová

jeptiška

Vlastimila Vlková

hospodyně Balcarová

Karel Augusta

lékař-psychiatr

Václav Vondráček

skákavý Machoň

Jana Sedlmajerová

Eliška Blodková

Marie Černá (2)

Marie

Marie Hübschová

Eliščina matka

JUDr. Jaroslav Blažek

radní Trakl

Evelyna Steimarová

služka Karla

Miloslav Šindler

sládek Hons

Marian Cingroš

regenschori

Jan Kotva

Rudolf

Zdeněk Grygárek

redaktor Kubát

Milena Kaplická

Kubátová

Josef Burda

měšťan

Karel Hovorka

měšťan

Jiřina Jandová

Bergerová

Otto Ohnesorg

farář

Vít Pešina

František

Olga Przygrodská

Libuše

Josef Skrčený

bezzubý Fricek

Josef Vlček (2)

kostelník

Jan Vlček

hostinský

Růžena Vlčková

Mlezivová

Václav Vodák

purkmistr

Vladimír Zoubek

švec Bláha

J. Havlíková

Poláková

Gabriela Ryzcová ml.

Blanka

Ladislav Mrázek

vedoucí orchestru

Antonín Kühnel

hudebník

Jiří Stehlík

hudebník

Jar. Drážďanský

hudebník

G. Freiman

hudebník

F. Janák

hudebník

Robert Kühnel

hudebník

V. Řezníček

hudebník

Milan Sivek

hudebník

Jar. Šmatlák

hudebník

Jaroslava Bauerová

Vlastimil Čáp

Marie Čápová

Dagmar Dobrovodská

Věra Dvořáková (2)

Růžena Ferencová

Magda Hanzlíková

František Havel (2)

Jan Herodes

kluk

Olga Hnátková

Josef Hrbek

Vl. Kalčíková

Vincenc Koblitz

Isabela Koblitzová

Josef Kočí

Petra Kodýmová

Jan Kolaja

Ladislav Kouklík

Olga Kutálková

Světlana Marinovová

Jiřina Maturová

Jiřina Merhautová

Aleš Plhoň

Antonín Pohořelý

Magda Prokůpková

Ota Růžička

Gabriela Ryzcová

Libuše Slabihoudková

Antonín Slovák

Dáša Svobodová

Věra Ševčíková

František Šmíd

Magdalena Šmídová

Božena Šnajdrová

Naďa Trifkovičová

Ludmila Večeřová

Ladislava Veselá

Miloš Větvička

Marie Všetečková

Josef Zejda

Františka Zemanová

Dubbing

Josef Somr

hlas Jana Maliny

Jaroslav Satoranský

hlas Synáčka

Jaroslav Satoranský

hlas dr. Hilmara

Crew and creators

Director

Juraj Herz

Second Unit Director

Miloš Kohout

Assistant Director

Josef Ryzec, Bohumila Velková

Based on

Jaroslav Havlíček (Petrolejové lampy – román)

Shooting Script

Juraj Herz

Script Editor

Václav Nývlt

Second Unit Photography

Jozef Müller

Production Designer

Zbyněk Hloch

Set Designer

Ivan Ernyei, Ivo Černý, Rudolf Herz, Jiří Rulík

Costume Designer

Irena Greifová

Sound Designer

František Černý, Bohumír Brunclík (zvukové efekty)

Production Manager

Karel Kochman, Ladislav Novotný

Unit Production Manager

Václav Havlík, Karel Škop

Unit Production Manager

Jan Rath

Cooperation

Ludmila Hergottová, Karel Ješátko, Anna Mejtská, Ivan Rybín, Antonín Heřman (vrchní osvětlovač), Miloslav Vojslavský

Music

Music Composed by

Luboš Fišer

Music Performed by

FISYO

Music Conducted by

František Belfín (FISYO)

Songs

Perspektiva /Má milá, rozmilá, neplakej/, Vlak do nádraží zvolna vjel, Konečně je to možná věc..., Píseň zhýralého jinocha /Nezahynu od práce/, Dáma a oficír /Já žasnu, jak jste ztepilá/

Writer of Lyrics

František Gellner (Perspektiva /Má milá, rozmilá, neplakej/), František Gellner (Vlak do nádraží zvolna vjel), František Gellner (Konečně je to možná věc...), František Gellner (Píseň zhýralého jinocha /Nezahynu od práce/)

Singer

Josef Laufer (Perspektiva /Má milá, rozmilá, neplakej/), sbor (Perspektiva /Má milá, rozmilá, neplakej/), Iva Janžurová (Perspektiva /Má milá, rozmilá, neplakej/), Marie Rosůlková (Perspektiva /Má milá, rozmilá, neplakej/), sbor (Vlak do nádraží zvolna vjel), Karel Černoch (Konečně je to možná věc...), Petr Čepek (Píseň zhýralého jinocha /Nezahynu od práce/), Josef Laufer (Dáma a oficír /Já žasnu, jak jste ztepilá/), Karel Černoch (Dáma a oficír /Já žasnu, jak jste ztepilá/)

Production info

Original Title

Petrolejové lampy

English Title

Oil Lamps

Copyright

1971

Production Year

1971

Premiere

10/1971

Technical info

Format

Betacam, DVD

Versions

Czech

Awards

Nominace

Festival: 25. mezinárodní filmový festival Cannes

1972
Cannes / France

Vítěz

Festival: 22. filmový festival pracujících – podzim ´71

1971
107 měst / Czechoslovakia