Let’s Sing a Song

tragicomedy

Typology

feature

Czech title

Pějme píseň dohola

Runtime

103

Country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1990

Production year

1990

Premiere

15.07.1991

Language version

Czech

Director

Ondřej Trojan

Screenplay

Jan Hřebejk, Petr Jarchovský

Summary

Jan Hřebejk and Petr Jarchovský – two distinctive personalities who would go on to form one of the most enduring writer-director partnerships in post-war Czechoslovak film – co-operated on the screenplay for this tragicomedy set in a scout (socialist-era “pioneer”) camp. Pějme píseň dohola (Let’s Sing a Song, 1990) provided the directing debut for a core member of the Sklep Theatre of Prague, Ondřej Trojan. In later years, now primarily wearing a producer’s hat, Trojan would team up on many other successful projects alongside Hřebejk and Jarchovský. This summer holiday story, mining both the bizarreness and curiosity factor of organised camp life, served as a showcase film for an emerging generation of filmmakers, and their very particular sense of style and humour. Today, Pějme píseň dohola has attained cult status. The role of female pioneer Tráva is played by the next of Hřebejk’s star finds, namely Anna Geislerová, here seen in her debut role.

Synopsis

Marek is driving his friend Ondra to a pioneer camp where Ondra is going to start work as a trainee. During a meeting, Ondra is introduced to the scoutmaster Bison who ends every conversation with the approving words "Otter Motter". The caretaker Čada's storehouse is full of treasures, and the bald-headed Zdeněk secretly arranges a sauna in there. Another scoutmaster, Bob, a bodybuilder of feeble brains, is responsible for the teenagers. There are two other weirdos there, the bearded Bušek and the hirsute lad Jaroušek. The other trainee apart from Honza is a skinny lad called Sado. All events at the camp are supervised by Margot, the uncompromising cleaning lady. The local star is the blonde medical officer Vendy, the girlfriend of Marek, but he leaves the camp straight after their first quarrel. The enchanted Ondra then tries to hook up with Vendy for the rest of the time. The children, too, are mostly personalities who are hard to overlook. Many of them have been going to the camp on a regular basis, and the usual routine thus arrives very soon - the parades with the hoisting of the flag, the campfire, the first smoking and drinking, as well as love experiences. One of the trips ends up close to the limit. Bob is injured by a ball thrown during a sports afternoon. It hits him on the head and the man almost dies amidst the hustle of the last camping hours. Bison confiscates toothpastes and cremes in order to pre-empt the practical jokes that are a traditional part of the last night. The camp is over - an ambulance arrives to take Bob to the hospital, a girl called Grass has lice and her hair must be cut short. Vendy hysterically reproaches the trainee after Marek's offended departure. Finally, the storehouse burns to the ground due to the caretaker's cigarette butt.

Note

The story is divided by subheads: Day 1 Otter Motter; Day 2 Repeat Quickly ML; Day 5 Spoorgy Moorgy Tiger; Day 12 Painted Children; Day 13 What Is Love; Day 19 Put Your Hands in front of You; Day 20 Trooh Trooh.

Film online

Cast

Václav Chalupa

praktikant Ondra Batík

Ulrika Kotajná

zdravotnice Vendy

Ladislav Brothánek

vedoucí tábora Pepa Poulíček zvaný Bizon

Jiří Šašek

správce Jirka Čada

Radek Říha

oddílový vedoucí Bob

Jan Procházka (3)

oddílový vedoucí Zdeněk Faustus

Jiří Remeš

oddílový vedoucí Bušek

Martin Janouš

oddílový vedoucí Jaroušek

Andrea Sousedíková

uklízečka Margot

Martin Chmátal

svazák Marek

Jiří Strach

praktikant Luděk zvaný Saďour

Karel Sládek

Brudňák

Denisa Benešová

Martina Zbořilová

Jan Semotán

Martin Kusý zvaný Magor

Tereza Hubená

Sjůzn

Robert Hudecký

Mireček

Valerie Halabicová

Hybrida

Milan Svoboda ml.

Krchov

Jan Demeter (2)

cikán Laco

Robert Paulů

pionýr Dan

Erik Grec

Komár

Jan Kincl

Oleg

Hana Nešetřilová

holčička

Eliška Lorincová

holčička

Emanuel Pondělíček

chlapeček

Milan Svoboda st.

hajný

Karel Huráb

občan Brych

žáci Základní školy v Proseči

Iveta Vachová

kaskadérka

Dubbing

Mirko Musil

hlas Bizona

Crew and creators

Second Unit Director

Stanislav Rovný

Assistant Director

Romana Prachařová, Vladimíra Lenertová

Script Editor

Miloš Cajthaml

Camera Operator

Jan Smolík

Production Designer

Jiří Matolín

Art Director

David Vávra

Set Designer

Jindřich Rada, Karel Vaňásek

Film Editor

Jan Mattlach

Sound Designer

Tomáš Janeček

Special Effects

Jiří Šimunek, Pavel Kryml, Miroslav Šnábl

Titles Designed by

František Váša (animace), Marcela Burdová

Production Manager

Jaroslav Bouček

Unit Production Manager

Jitka Hoferková, Michal Přikryl

Unit Production Manager

Novotný František (výroba), Ondřej Nerud, Eva Dymáková

Cooperation

Klára Stránská, Václav Kuba (pyrotechnik), Martin Kulhánek (pyrotechnik), Jakub Cajthaml, Vladimír Heiser, Soňa Nemcová, Alena Kravková

Music

Music Composed by

Jiří Křivka, skupina Zikkurat

Songs

Nocí zaznělo, Tramp, Plakalo baby, Co je to láska, V širém poli studánečka, Otec Abrahám měl sedm synů, Svatý Vavřín

Songwriter

Jan Nedvěd (Tramp), Pavel Krejča (Plakalo baby), Petr Novák (Co je to láska), lidová píseň (V širém poli studánečka), lidová píseň (Svatý Vavřín), Jaroslav Hutka (Svatý Vavřín) (úprava), Štěpán Rak (Svatý Vavřín) (úprava)

Writer of Lyrics

Tomáš Hanák (Nocí zaznělo), Jan Nedvěd (Tramp), Jiří Štaidl (Plakalo baby), Ivo Plicka (Co je to láska), lidová píseň (Svatý Vavřín), Jaroslav Hutka (Svatý Vavřín) (úprava)

Singer

Martin Janouš (Nocí zaznělo), Radek Říha (Tramp), Petr Spálený (Plakalo baby), Petr Novák (Co je to láska), Věra Wajsarová (Co je to láska), Valerie Halabicová (V širém poli studánečka), sbor (Otec Abrahám měl sedm synů), Martin Janouš (Svatý Vavřín)

Production info

Original Title

Pějme píseň dohola

English Title

Let’s Sing a Song

Copyright

1990

Production Year

1990

Premiere

15.07.1991

Distribution

Lucernafilm - Gama

Creative Group

Dušan Kukal ( TS Rarášek)

Technical info

Format

Betacam, DVD

Versions

Czech