The Mulish Victor

Country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1985

Production year

1984—1985

Premiere

1 February 1986

Runtime

83 min

Category

film

Genre

psychological

Typology

featuretheatrical distributionlong

Original title

Mezek

Czech title

Mezek

English title

The Mulish Victor

Working title

Moje cizí děti

Summary

With his feature film debut Dneska přišel nový kluk (A New Boy Started Today, 1981), director Vladimir Drha set the tone for numerous Czech films that provide a critical view of society through the eyes of young protagonists. In his second film, Mezek (The Mulish Victor, 1983), Drha shifted his focus to a tutor who steadily tries to improve the prospects young people, in particular boys at a mining vocational school. Although the pedagogical efforts of Viktor Mezek often come to naught, they never lack personal involvement and honesty. Mezek has, however, sacrificed everything for his charges and his personal life is about to crash and burn… The screenplay for Mezek came from seasoned screenwriter Irena Charvátová (Housata [Goslings, 1979], Skleněný dům [Glass House, 1981], Hadí jed [Snake Poison, 1981]). This modestly conceived motion picture strives for authenticity by casting non-professional actors. The lead role, however, went to experienced actor Jiří Hálek.

Synopsis

The teacher Viktor Mezek (whose last name means "mule" in English) is widely respected by the young apprentices. He is absolutely devoted to his profession. He divorced many years ago and now lives with his girlfriend Hana, while at the same time having lost all contact with his only son. His colleagues think that he is too keen on his work; most of them have families and cannot work after hours. Mezek sensitively solves the problems of his charges - some of them are homesick at the boarding home, others have poor family backgrounds. Viktor is, however, uncompromising when it comes to bullying, stealing and missing shifts. He is deeply affected by an anonymous letter about his reported unorderly personal life which the schoolmaster shows him. Hana feels that her relationship with Viktor is stagnating. She leaves with a girlfriend for Christmas. Mezek then invites the apprentice Laco over for the holidays. The boarding home is closed and the boy does not want to go to the children's home at any cost. Hana returns home unexpectedly and barely conceals her disappointment that they are not alone together. After the holidays, Laco is mocked by one of the apprentices suggesting his homosexual relationship with Mezek. Laco beats him to a bloody mess. He refuses to tell the reason and is thus proposed for expulsion. He then disappears and Viktor searches for him in the town. Meanwhile, his son arrives to visit him. Hana puts on the video which Mezek plays over and over again. It is several old amateur shots of the son as toddler. Viktor meanwhile spots Laco hitchhiking on a road. He rushes out of the car and tries to stop the escaping boy.

Cast

Jiří Hálek

vychovatel Viktor Mezek

Lenka Termerová

Hana Kejřová, Viktorova družka

Zdeněk Holub (2)

učeň Laco Šoltýs

František Tomica

ředitel učiliště

Jiří Lacina

zástupce ředitele Karel Rohl

Antonín Trnka

tělovýchovný instruktor Míša

Monika Hálová

vychovatelka Blanka

Eva Matalová

vychovatelka Eva

Kamil Spáčil

vychovatel Zdeněk

Karol Janega

mistr Kolčava

Vladimír Drha

vychovatel Sváťa

Lubomír Topolčan

učeň Pepík Sláma

Milena Šajdková

Slámova matka

Jiří Šindelář (4)

kulturní instruktor

Kostas Zerdaloglu

Blančin muž

Zora Huvarová

sekretářka Miluška

Jiří Wisiorek

učeň Ivan Prouza

Antonín Holub

rodič v obecenstvu

Jindřich Jung

učeň Ruda

Pavol Jursa

učeň Dan

Petr Mroček

učeň Bohouš

Jiří Navrátil

učeň Petr Daneš

Vladimír Rak

učeň Miloš

Anton Režný

učeň Marian

Roman Řezníček

učeň Takáč

Václav Římský

havíř Franta

Roman Šiko

učeň Pavel

Miroslav Šamaj

učeň Vlastík

Igor Štěpka

učeň Standa

Igor Baláž

učeň Gejza

František Egyed

učeň Zdeněk

Radim Tobiáš

učeň Ondra

Josef Wimmer

vychovatel Mašek

Vladimír Švanda

vychovatel

Štefan Zrelica

slovenský učeň Jožka

Bedřich Bambuch

učitel

Renata Ondříčková

učitelka

Anna Oborná

sekretářka Ivanka

Pavel Verner

mistr

Zdeněk Lutonský

děda Kamarýt

žáci Středního odborného učiliště koncernového podniku Výstavba ostravsko-karvinských dolů v Havířově

pedagogové Středního odborného učiliště koncernového podniku Výstavba ostravsko-karvinských dolů v Havířově

zaměstnanci Středního odborného učiliště koncernového podniku Výstavba ostravsko-karvinských dolů v Havířově

Crew and creators

Second Unit Director

Josef Sandr

Assistant Director

Jan Dolejš, Magda Vodičková

Director of Photography

Antonín Holub

Second Unit Photography

Roman Pavlíček

Camera Operator

Emil Hora

Production Designer

Bohumil Nový

Set Designer

Ivo Černý, Petr Hruška, Miloš Osvald, Jiří Rulík

Costume Designer

Vojtěch Kolařík

Film Editor

Jan Chaloupek

Sound Designer

Miloslav Hůrka

Production Manager

Miloš Stejskal

Unit Production Manager

Zuzana Kovaříková, Hana Štefanová

Unit Production Manager

Karel Hrdý, Jana Příkaská

Consultant

Norbert Hanzlík, František Tomica, Karel Čepička, Jan Brožíček

Cooperation

Veronika Pollertová, Alena Chvojková, Magda Hájková, Roman Hladík, Jiří Bělík, Josef Řezáč

Music

Music Composed by

Pavel Skála

Selected Music

Oskar Nedbal (opereta Polská krev /S láskou si nelze hrát/ – )

Music Performed by

FISYO (Music Conducted by Mario Klemens), Dechová hudba Středního odborného učiliště koncernového podniku Výstavba ostravsko-karvinských dolů v Havířově /SOU k. p. VOKD/ (Music Conducted by Zdeněk Seibert), Big-beatová skupina SOU k. p. VOKD

Songs

Už mně koně vyvádějí

Singer Lenka Termerová

Za starú Breclavú

Singer Monika HálováJiří Lacina

Nezamčené dveře

Songwriter Miroslav Fic
Writer of Lyrics Robert Frost
Singer Big-beatová skupina SOU k. p. VOKD

Veselé vánoční hody

Production info

Original Title

Mezek

Czech Title

Mezek

English Title

The Mulish Victor

Working Title

Moje cizí děti

Category

film

Typology

featuretheatrical distribution

Genre

psychological

Origin country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1985

Production Year

1984—1985

Production specifications

literary Screenplay approved 20 September 1984
start of filming 15 October 1984
technical Screenplay approved 8 November 1984
end of filming 13 April 1985
projection approval 3 June 1985

Premiere

premiere 1 February 1986

Technical info

Duration typology

feature film

Duration in minutes

83 min

Original length in metres

2 439 meters

Distribution carrier

35mm

Versions

Czech

Awards

Vítěz

Festival: 20. filmový festival mladých Trutnov

1986
Trutnov / Czechoslovakia
Lenka Termerová

Vítěz

Festival: 24. festival českých a slovenských filmů Mariánské Lázně

1986
Mariánské Lázně / Czechoslovakia
Jiří Hálek