Romance for the Bugle

Otakar Vávra, 1966



A trio of features united with the name of the poet František Hrubín holds an exceptional place in Otakar Vávra’s filmography. The director, who reached his fifties at the beginning of the 1960s, reveals himself in the films Srpnová neděle (August Sunday, 1960), Zlatá reneta (The Golden Queening, 1965) and Romance pro křídlovku (Romance for the Bugle, 1966) as a personality that foreshadowed and absorbed the artistic achievements of the Czechoslovak New Wave. As a lecturer at Prague film school FAMU, Vávra shaped many of its future leading representatives, but at the same time he was influenced by his students. So the “Hrubín trilogy” shows qualities that were never typical of Vávra´s work – elaborate lyrical optics, a sense for the ordinary and empathy for characters nostalgically searching for the things of the past. Romance pro křídlovku (Romance for the Bugle), inspired by the eponymous Hrubín poem, works with the unexpected encounter of two men who three decades ago had fought for the love of a beautiful girl from the circus – 16-year-old Terina (Zuzana Cigánová). The inert memory of ageing teacher Vojta is revived by a mere four bars played on a bugle. The man, leaving the village pub late in the evening, recognises another man, Viktor (Štefan Kvietik), as his former rival in love. He discovers that Terina, who had been engaged to Viktor, is no longer alive. However, the memories bring Vojta back to the past, to the summer holidays and the intoxicating power of first love. The naïve romantic outburst of an inexperienced student (Jaromír Hanzlík) presents a stark contrast to the death of his grandfather that will fatefully affect the young couple’s preparations for their escape to imaginary freedom. This evergreen feature, one of the best entries in Vávra´s filmography, won a number of local and international awards (among the awards are the Special Jury Award and Silver Medal at the 1967 Moscow International Film Festival (IFF), and the Silver Siren at the 1969 Festival of Czechoslovak Film held in Sorrento, Italy).
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About a film

film_production_year 1966
film_countries Czechoslovakia
film_genres narrative
film_form feature
film_duration 84 min
film_director Otakar Vávra
film_cast Jaromír Hanzlík, Július Vašek, Zuzana Cigánová, Štefan Kvietik, Miriam Kantorková, Janusz Strachocki
film_director_of_photography Andrej Barla
film_screenplay František Hrubín, Otakar Vávra
film_film_editor Antonín Zelenka
film_production_designer Karel Škvor
film_art_director Ester Krumbachová
film_music_composed_by Jiří Srnka
film_sound_designer František Strangmüller