The Period of Examinations

psychological

Typology

feature

Czech title

Zkouškové období

Runtime

87

Country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1990

Production year

1990

Premiere

01.09.1990

Language version

Czech

Director

Zdeněk Troška

Screenplay

Pavel Škapík

Screenstory

Pavel Škapík

Summary

With this surprisingly modest motion picture director Zdeněk Troška broke off from his promising run of comedy productions. Between the making of the first and second sequels to his Slunce seno jahody (Sun, Hay and Strawberries, 1983) film – which he shot in 1989 and 1991, respectively – he took a sideways step to film a drama screenplay by Pavel Škapík. Its narrative responded to the contemporary events surrounding the 1989 Velvet Revolution. The character relationships story was actually already under development before the social upheaval began; it was quickly updated and enhanced with motifs reflecting the ongoing changes in society. The main protagonist of the picture is student Petr Soukup (Petr Strejček), who is actively involved in a student picket. Since he is originally from Karlovy Vary, he is tasked with garnering support at schools in the spa city. However, Petr’s attention is rather absorbed in his relationships with students Zuzana (Jana Krausová) and Martina (Yvetta Blanarovičová) as well as by the plight of a friend – single mother Jiřina who is making ends meet by working as a prostitute. Popular rock and pop singer Lucie Bílá delivers a focused performance in the role of the single mother.

Synopsis

Petr Soukup, a student, does not feel like going to Karlovy Vary to celebrate his father's promotion to senior consultant of the local hospital. Petr has a lover in Prague. It is an elderly piano player named Zuzana who lives with her husband, a homosexual called Jiří. At home, Petr has a quarrel with his father because he does not respect him for his conformism. He visits his friend Jiřina, a prostitute who does not take care of her little son Martínek. Petr, however, likes the boy and Martínek becomes attached to him, too. It is November 1989, the outbreak of the Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia. Petr thus quickly returns to Prague and joins a student's strike, replacing a student Martina printing leaflets. He then makes love to her and begins to date the girl, who forces him to break up with Zuzana. He is appointed to agitate in the Karlovy Vary schools. After his return to Prague, he is accompanied by the little Martínek to the railway station and the boy begs him to read his letter. But Petr forgets. He catches Martina making love to another student and returns to Zuzana with whom he discusses her husband's homosexual orientation several times. Petr also witnesses an "adultery" of Jiří's partner but Jiří understands it with hindsight. Petr learns during his next visit to Karlovy Vary that Jiřina poisoned herself as well as Martínek. He feels guilty for the boy's death and his distress results in his gastric ulcer bursting. He is admitted to a hospital, but runs away after the surgery and attends a rehearsal of a local orchestra where Zuzana also performs. But the pianist is consumed by her playing and does not realize the student's presence. Petr leaves in disappointment.

Cast

Petr Strejček

student Petr Soukup

Yvetta Blanarovičová

Martina Matějková

Jana Krausová

klavíristka Zuzana Kupecká, Petrova milenka

Lucie Bílá

Jiřina, Petrova kamarádka

Václav Stulík

Martin, Jiřinin synek

Václav Stanislav

Vláďa Kotlařík, Petrův spolubydlící

Tomáš Malina

Jarouš, Petrův spolubydlící

Jan Novotný

Jirka, Zuzanin manžel

Michal Dlouhý

student zvaný Biceps

Břetislav Slováček

primář Soukup, Petrův otec

Eva Lecchiová

Soukupová, Petrova matka

Rudolf Kubík

Dan, Jirkův milenec

Venuše Humheyová

Matějková, matka Martiny

Petr Burian

ing. Matějka, otec Martiny

MUDr. Jiří Jedlička

lékař

Jan Černý (2)

člen stávkového výboru

Tomáš Barák

člen stávkového výboru

Zuzana Púčiková

dívka u xeroxu

Kamila Roubalová

studentka Ilona

Markéta Pechačová

Káča

Radek Kříž

Honza

Tereza Bazgerová

Janička, dcera Zuzany

Zuzana Jedličková

lékařka

Marcel Kučera

mladý lékař

Eva Tauchenová

dohazovačka prostitutek

Jana Šedová

sousedka Jiřiny

Miloslav Janíček

dirigent

Adam Viktora

hudebník

Eva Viktorová

profesorka

Jaroslav Beníšek

Jana Bergerová

Petra Čechová

Zbyněk Černý

Robert Gažo

Marie Chřibková

MUDr. Miroslav Chochola

Ingrid Jánská

Eva Kolenská

Antonín Kořenek

Ota Kovařík

Martina Leierová

Vladislav Nos

Věra Stieberová

František Špaček

Hana Večeřová

Daniela Veselská

Vladimír Voborník

Crew and creators

Second Unit Director

Magdalena Pivoňková

Assistant Director

Jiří Moravčík, Ivana Adamovská

Screenstory

Pavel Škapík

Screenplay

Pavel Škapík

Second Unit Photography

Ladislav Chroust

Camera Operator

Stanislav Šťastný

Production Designer

Jindřich Kočí

Set Designer

Bohumil Kadlec, Jan Klíma, Martin Tlamicha

Costume Designer

Marie Franková

Film Editor

Eva Bobková

Sound Designer

Jiří Hora

Production Manager

Blažej Vráb

Unit Production Manager

Rudolf Mos, Václav Šeda

Unit Production Manager

Petr Čermák, Roman Molnár

Cooperation

Pavlína Volrábová, Jiří Zobač, Ivan Balurov, Helena Lehovcová, Vladimír Duben

Music

Music Composed by

Miki Jelínek

Selected Music

Ludwig van Beethoven (Klavírní koncert č. 4), Ludwig van Beethoven (Klavírní koncert č. 5), Ludwig van Beethoven (Symfonie č. 7 A dur), Ludwig van Beethoven (Sonáta pro klavír es moll)

Music Performed by

Orchestr F.O.K., Západočeský symfonický orchestr Mariánské Lázně, Česká filharmonie, Jan Panenka (2), Zdeněk Troška, Adam Viktora, FISYO

Music Conducted by

Václav Smetáček (Orchestr F.O.K.), Miloslav Janíček (Západočeský symfonický orchestr Mariánské Lázně), Václav Neumann (Česká filharmonie), Jan Frank (FISYO)

Songs

Vždycky jsem to já, Dva roky prázdnin, Málo mě zná, Hydromaniak, Wonderland /Pábitelé/

Songwriter

Ladislav Štaidl (Vždycky jsem to já), Ladislav Štaidl (Dva roky prázdnin), Ladislav Štaidl (Málo mě zná), Ladislav Štaidl (Hydromaniak), Ladislav Štaidl (Wonderland /Pábitelé/)

Writer of Lyrics

Miroslav Černý (Vždycky jsem to já), Zdeněk Borovec (Dva roky prázdnin), Ladislav Štaidl (Málo mě zná), Miroslav Černý (Hydromaniak)

Singer

Dalibor Janda (Vždycky jsem to já), Iveta Bartošová (Dva roky prázdnin), Iveta Bartošová (Málo mě zná), Michal Penk (Hydromaniak)

Production info

Original Title

Zkouškové období

English Title

The Period of Examinations

Copyright

1990

Production Year

1990

Premiere

01.09.1990

Distribution

Lucernafilm

Creative Group

Jan Vild

Technical info

Format

35mm , Betacam

Versions

Czech