Archive of films Pupendo / Pupendo

Czech Republic
2003, 122 min

Section: Official Selection - Competition
Year: 2003

Set just prior to the Orwellian year 1984, the film focuses on tragicomic incidents in the life of sculptor Bedřich Mára, a prohibited artist who decides to "purify himself" by compromising with the Communist regime. Mára´s children and those of his peers observe in bewilderment as the adults engineer a ridiculous daily struggle to keep their consciences clean and put bread on the table.


Set just prior to the Orwellian year 1984, the movie focuses on several tragicomic incidents in the life of Bedřich Mára, a Prague sculptor of uncompromising political opinions whose promising artistic career is cut short by the Communist regime. The bohemian artist has been barred from exhibiting his work and, with the help of his devoted wife Alena, he supports his family producing ceramic kitsch. In contrast, Magda, Mára´s former student at the Art Academy, and her husband, principal Míla, decided not to give the regime a reason to pick on them. But things get a bit sticky for the protagonists when Mára accepts a humiliating state commission by way of reviving his career. The adults´ compromises and their ridiculous daily struggle to keep their consciences clean and put bread on the table are observed by their bewildered teenage kids, who dream of a refuge transcending the limits of everyday life. An infantile initiation ritual practiced by school children lent its name to this third cooperative effort by director Jan Hřebejk and screenwriter Petr Jarchovský. The filmmakers turn once again to the recent past: this time around it´s the era of Communist normalization, a time they associate with the bittersweet atmosphere of growing up.

About the director

Jan Hřebejk (b. 1967, Prague) is one of today´s most popular Czech directors. After graduating in screenwriting and script editing from Prague´s Film Academy (FAMU), he debuted in 1993 with the fifties retrofilm Big Beat, awarded Czech Lions for Best Direction and Best Film. He and screenwriter Petr Jarchovský drew inspiration for his second film from writer Petr Šabach to create Cosy Dens (1999), a family tragicomedy reflecting on the events of 1968. The occupation comedy Divided We Fall (2000) followed and was nominated for an Oscar. Hřebejk was also successful directing for Czech Television; he also works in the theatre (four one-act plays, Christopher Hampton´s Dangerous Liaisons and Woody Allen´s Bullets Over Broadway).


Falcon a.s.
Radlická 1c/3185, 150 00, Praha 5
Czech Republic
Tel: +420 224 422 244
Fax: +420 224 422 240
E-mail: [email protected]

Czech Television - Telexport
Kavčí hory, 140 70, Praha 4
Czech Republic
Tel: +420 261 137 051
Fax: +420 261 211 354
E-mail: [email protected]

Česká televize
Kavčí hory, 140 70, Praha 4
Czech Republic
Tel: +420 261 131 111
E-mail: [email protected]

Total HelpArt T.H.A.
Kříženeckého nám. 322, 152 53, Praha 5
Czech Republic
Tel: +420 267 073 007
Fax: +420 267 073 836
E-mail: [email protected]

About the film

Color, 35 mm
International premiere

Section: Official Selection - Competition
Director: Jan Hřebejk
Screenplay: Petr Jarchovský podle motivů knih Petra Šabacha Hovno hoří, Opilé banány, Babičky / based on the novels by Petr Šabach Hovno hoří, Opilé banány, Babičky
Dir. of Photography: Jan Malíř
Music: Oscar Petr, Marsyas a jiní / and others
Editor: Vladimír Barák
Producer: Ondřej Trojan
Production: Total HelpArt T.H.A., koprodukce / co-production: Česká televize / Czech Television
Cast: Boleslav Polívka, Eva Holubová, Jaroslav Dušek, Vilma Cibulková, Jiří Pecha, Pavel Liška, Zuzana Kronerová, Bohumil Klepl, Boris Hybner
Contact: Falcon a.s., Czech Television - Telexport, Česká televize, Total HelpArt T.H.A.


Ondřej Trojan

Festival Organizer, Film Director, Producer

Jan Bradáč

Distributor, Cinema Representative, Producer

Pavlína Fechterová

Service Company Rep.

Jan Hřebejk

Film Director

Bolek Polívka


Jan Malíř

Director of Photography

Petr Jarchovský

Screenwriter, Screenwriter

Lukáš Baborský

Beatrix Wesle

Jaroslav Kučera


Jaroslav Dušek


Michal Holubec

Film Crew

Eva Holubová


Pavel Liška



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