The Time of Butterflies

Country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1990

Production year

1990

Premiere

1 September 1991

Runtime

98 min

Category

film

Genre

children, fairytale

Typology

featurelong

Original title

Motýlí čas

Czech title

Motýlí čas

English title

The Time of Butterflies

Synopsis

Jenda and his friend Lucy are the only ones in the classroom who live in a development of villas. A group of their classmates mocks them, calling them bride and groom. They even attack Jenda, emptying his schoolbag on the pavement. The boy is mostly cared for by his grandfather because his father is a ship’s captain and is at sea most of the time and his mother, a dentist, often returns from her consulting room late at night. An unknown black foreigner brings Jenda a gift from his father. It is cocoons of exotic butterflies. Jenda places them in a nest of salad leaves in a kilner jar but separates the largest and most unusual one. He searches for advice from his good friend, the natural scientist Professor Renc. The old man is in a wheelchair but is extremely vigorous and even creates timelapse films of flowers. He recommends the boy to keep the cocoons warm and calm. The hatched butterflies also include a small winged creature which laughs in a high-pitched voice and moreover turns into a puppet every time someone unknown enters the room. Jenda finds its picture in the professor’s old encyclopaedia. The caption reads “Physica curiosa – Nympha lepidopthera”. Renc concludes that the creature is a rare phenomenon – a nymph. Jenda takes the rest of the butterflies to a botanical garden and names the nymph Urugu. The nymph even makes him forget about Lucy. The mysterious Urugu gives him a magical performance in which things come alive and change. Then the nymph confesses to Jenda that she can appear to only one person to whom she brings good luck. But she faces a serious danger – she is helpless if exposed to the light of the full moon. Jenda takes Urugu to school. The nymph cannot help herself and causes a stir with her magic powers. Jenda is punished by a home confinement and his mother gives the puppet, into which the nymph has turned, to its supposed owner, Lucy. But Jenda gets the nymph back and stays with her at home, successfully pretending to suffer from sore throat. Together, they make a model airplane and Jenda shows it off to the boys at school. Urugu visits the botanical garden but finds her butterfly friends dead, killed by an assistant. Jenda finds the nymph weeping after she burnt their bodies in a heater. Jenda’s father returns from abroad. The family celebrates his return in the evening and Lucy and her parents are also invited. Everybody is having good gime and Jenda forgets about the nymph who is all alone in the room. When Jenda comes in to share the joy of his father’s return, he sees the nymph flying out of an open window to the moon. The boy tells the professor about his sorrow. The old man explains that this kind of experience never lasts long and also reminds him about Lucy, who is waiting in front of the house. Jenda promises the newly found friend that he will make a large airplane for them instead of just a model.

Cast

Luděk Navrátil

Jenda Řehoř

Jaromír Hanzlík

Jendův otec, lodní lékař

Vlastimil Brodský

profesor Renc

Kateřina Pokorná

Lucka, Jeníkova spolužačka

Lenka Skopalová

Lucčina matka

Jan Hrušínský

Pepík, Lucčin otec

Alena Kreuzmannová

hospodyně u profesora

Václav Cikánek

Lachta

Adam Novák

Pinďa

Kamila Krynická

dívka

Šimon Černoušek

kluk

Štěpán Novák

kluk

Štěpán Prášil

kluk

Stanislav Zindulka

hlídač ve skleníku

Dubbing

Tereza Brodská

hlas víly Urugu

Crew and creators

Second Unit Director

Pavel Klein

Assistant Director

Petr Skácel, Corina Schlesingerová, Jana Gotzová

Script Editor

Jiří Kubíček, Jan Očenáš

Second Unit Photography

Ivan Skopec

Camera Operator

Miroslav Kuchař, Milan Furman

Art Director

Břetislav Pojar

Set Designer

Dvořák Josef (výprava), Václav Hrubín, Milan Zeman

Make-Up Artist

František Havlíček, Markéta Daňková, Iva Sauermannová

Film Editor

Alois Fišárek

Sound Designer

Ivo Špalj, Lumír Turek

Production Manager

Zdeněk Polák, Bedřich Strnad

Unit Production Manager

Zdeněk Krištof, Martina Suchá, Ivana Vondrovicová

Cooperation

Ivan Frössl, Lenka Ilková, Ondřej Nývlt, Michal Houdek, Květa Kovářová, Jiří Helcel, Jiří Rumler, Miroslav Kubricht, Vít Lebeda, Helena Maroušková, Jiří Janeček, Milan Svatoš, František Váša, Miloš Zvěřina, Jana Mašková, Markéta Kozáková, Zdar Šorm, Soňa Toulcová, Helena Veselá, Darina Vítová, Ondřej Zika, Petr Vaňásek, Aleš Voleman, Antonín Müller, Jaroslav Bezděk, Tomáš Pokorný, Růžička Jan (2), Káťa Hladká, Eva Jirsová, Milan Konečný

Music

Music Composed by

Petr Skoumal

Songs

Swing Coctail /Hostina bohatých/, Když jsem šel z Hradišťa

Songwriter

Jaroslav Ježek (Swing Coctail /Hostina bohatých/), lidová píseň (Když jsem šel z Hradišťa)

Singer

Jaromír Hanzlík (Když jsem šel z Hradišťa)

Production info

Original Title

Motýlí čas

English Title

The Time of Butterflies

Category

film

Typology

feature

Genre

children, fairytale

Origin country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1990

Production Year

1990

Premiere

1 September 1991

Production

Krátký film Praha, Studio video a televizní tvorby (Krátký film Praha), Studio Jiřího Trnky (Krátký film Praha), Megatrend, Rock Demers les productions La F‰te

Distribution

KF a.s.

Technical info

Lenght

long

Runtime

98 min

Animation technique

combined (technique)

Versions

Czech

Subtitles

without subtitles