Powder and Gas

Jindřich Honzl, 1931



In 1931, the writing duo of Jiří Voskovec and Jan Werich undertook their first joint screenwriting effort. The musical comedy Pudr a benzin (Powder and Gas) was filmed by Jindřich Honzl, who also directed all 20 plays staged by the popular playwrights and leaders of the Osvobozené divadlo (Liberated Theatre). Honzl also directed another V+W film project, the later 1932 comedy Peníze nebo život (Your Money or Your Life). But Pudr a benzin does not seek to hide its theatrical roots, and also offers priceless, authentic performance recordings from the Osvobozené divadlo. Voskovec and Werichem play a quirky pair in the film – a clumsy motor coach driver, and an equally clumsy traffic superintendent – who both fall in love with the charming actress Marta (Ela Šárková). The story, which rides a wave of poeticism and the affinity of the authors for various trashy genres, is unified by an “action” tale pertaining to some cocaine dealers. The film, which was made at the start of the talkie era, was partly filmed in Paris, which had better audio recording equipment at its studios.
Read more


About a film

film_production_year 1931
film_countries Czechoslovakia
film_genres comedy
film_form feature
film_duration 92 min
film_director Jindřich Honzl
film_cast Jiří Voskovec, Jan Werich, Ela Šárková, Bohuš Záhorský, Vojta Plachý-Tůma, Josef Skřivan
film_director_of_photography Václav Vích
film_screenplay Jiří Voskovec, Jan Werich, Jindřich Honzl
film_production_designer Vilém Rittershain
film_art_director František Zelenka
film_music_composed_by Jaroslav Ježek
film_sound_designer Marcel Wendling, Portier, Karel Smrž