Archive of films Man About Town / Světáci
1969, 99 min
Section: Special Events
Three country plasterers decide to probe the mysteries of Prague’s nightlife. When they meet three elegant beauties, they little suspect that – like them – the girls are just pretending to be from the upper crust.... Ever-popular Czech actresses Jiřina Jirásková, Jiřina Bohdalová, and Iva Janžurová, who each celebrate a significant birthday this year, boosted the appeal of this seemingly easy-going gloss on the moral decay of socialist society.
Three country plasterers are living in Prague while they renovate façades. In order to probe the mysteries of urban nightlife and not come off as naïve yokels, they buy proper suits and get training in the social niceties. At the swish Diplomat Grill, the trio meet three elegant beauties. Unbeknownst to them, the girls are also pretending to be members of the elite in order to fleece the three masons, whom they mistake for their betters.... One of the best domestic comedies of the period, the film was co-created by director Zdeněk Podskalský and screenwriter Vratislav Blažek. The casting of the film boosted the appeal of this seemingly easy-going gloss on the moral decay of socialist society. First Republic star Oldřich Nový shines in his role as a former charm school teacher, while the female half of the cast is debonairly dominated by Jiřina Jirásková, Jiřina Bohdalová, and Iva Janžurová, actresses who have enjoyed decades of fame on the Czech film scene and who this year celebrate landmark birthdays.
About the director
Zdeněk Podskalský (1923-1993, Prague) studied at the humanities faculty of Charles University in 1945-49. In 1951 he transferred from FAMU to Moscow’s VGIK film academy. He started out as a TV director and remained faithful to television for the entirety of his long film career, which began in 1957 with the feature comedy Friday Morning. A knack for comedy combined with a talent for period social atmosphere marked all of his best pictures, whether the Faustian When the Woman Butts In (1959), the love story Never Strike a Woman...Even with a Flower (1966), the crime comedy My Dear Aunts and Me (1974), the tragicomedy Ball Lightning (1978), or the comedy The Christening Party (1981). His interest in the musical genre was confirmed by A Night at Karlstein (1973) and The Hit (1980). He also wrote screenplays, theater plays, and directed for the stage.
About the film
Black & white, 35 mm
|Dir. of Photography:||František Valert|
|Music:||Evžen Illín, Vlastimil Hála|
|Production:||Filmové studio Barrandov|
|Cast:||Jiřina Bohdalová, Jiřina Jirásková, Iva Janžurová, Jiří Sovák, Vlastimil Brodský, Jan Libíček, Jiřina Šejbalová, Oldřich Nový, Ilja Prachař, Vladimír Menšík, Otto Šimánek|