Night-Time Guest

Otakar Vávra, 1961

Film at Filmový přehled


Otakar Vávra’s 1961 intimate psychological drama was based on Host (Guest), a play by Ludvík Aškenazy released only a year earlier. It is notable for having acted as an inconspicuous signal that the state-guarded Czechoslovak cinema industry was entering a slightly more liberal phase. The lives of the protagonists – guests of a pub set in a remote village location – are invaded by dark shadows drawn from the past by German merchant Huppert (Rudolf Hrušínský). The jovial foreigner, who openly expresses his Nazi world view, reminds the barkeeper (Jiří Vala) of the SS man who tortured him in a concentration camp during the war. The barkeeper shoots at the guest, but despite the engagement of local policeman (Vladimír Brabec) nothing can be solved… Huppert was one of several villains performed by Rudolf Hrušínský, who quite often took the part of an evil German in the late 1950s and 1960s (consider, for instance, Reportáž psaná na oprátce [Report from the Gallows, 1961], Blbec z Xeenemünde [Idiot from Xeenemünde, 1963] and to an extent Spalovač mrtvol [The Cremator, 1969]).
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Film data

About a film

Production year 1961
Countries Czechoslovakia
Categories film
Genres drama, psychological
Form feature
Duration 90 min
Director Otakar Vávra
Cast Jiří Vala, Martin Růžek, Rudolf Hrušínský, Jana Hlaváčová, Světla Amortová, Vladimír Brabec
Director of photography Jaroslav Tuzar
Screenplay Ludvík Aškenazy, Otakar Vávra
Editor Antonín Zelenka
Production designer Karel Škvor
Music Jiří Srnka, Vlastimil Hála
Sound designer Emanuel Formánek