Princess Dysperanda and her maid Kaca would very much like to get married, but they have no one to marry. When a hunting bachelor appears and offers to find grooms for them just by signing with their own blood, the girls don't hesitate too much. Except that the rolled-up figure was the devil, and they are to be fried in hell! Fortunately, there is still a retired soldier, Martin Kabat, who is not afraid of the devil and is not going to let those two innocent souls go free... The ageless fairy tale was filmed in 1956 by Josef Mach, based on a play by Jan Drda, who collaborated with the director on the film script. The costumes and stylized studio decorations bear the stamp of the unmistakable handwriting of their author – a well known painter and illustrator Josef Lada.
An annual Christmas fairy tale classic based on Drda's theatrical design. Many of us don't see it as a completely traditional fairy tale, but more like a story that points to the grey timelessness of 1956. Unforgettable quirky characters such as Dragoun Martin Kabat, Princess Disperanda, the hypocritical hermit Skolastykus, the brilliant robber Sarka-Farka, and the truly excellent devils Omnimor and Karborund with the highest infernal Beelzebub.
Stylized studio cartoon decorations and sceneries according to Josef Lada's art designs, give this film the absolutely right atmosphere. It wouldn't be possible without them. Everything here is beautifully colourful, and everything fits together beautifully. In its time, an excellent fairy tale with just a bit of a smell of socialism was created, which we admire and watch with joy to this day. It's no wonder it's been hailed as one of the best damn hellish tales of all time.
Since the fairy tale is very popular abroad and many of you already have it at home, we have a few interesting facts from the filming.
Alena Vranova recalled that during filming there were several poisonings in connection with the fact that the scenes were painted with aniline paints. "You don't see them nowadays, but before there was nothing else. Anyone who had abrasions or any wounds on their body, who even scratched themselves a little, immediately fell ill and had to seek medical help."
For the role of Lucius, a choice was made between Josef Vinklar and Josef Pehr. They agreed that whoever succeeds will buy the other a bottle of French cognac. As is already known today, Vinklar had to dig deep into his pocket to pay for it.