S certy nejsou zerty

So do you think there's much laughing going on in hell?

These Czechs are for kids. And kids of all ages. Loosely translated as Don't Mess With Devils, or maybe No Jokes in Hell, S certy nejsou zerty, a delightful fairy tale from Hynek Bocan (1985), has plenty of fun set down below. The devil (a wonderfully campy and snorting Ondrej Vetchy) and his minions constantly monitor the Book of Sins, where everyone on Earth is registered. Your deeds are weighed, and if, let's say, you're in need of a moral diet, you are welcomed with open arms. Poor Peter (handsome Vladimir Dlouhy) gets screwed out of his meager inheritance by - who else? - his wicked stepmother, and Satan goes into overdrive to save him for his fairy-tale love, Angelina. Unlike most Czech fables, this story, adapted from 19th-century Czech literary icon Bozena Nemcov, is sunny, full of slapstick and warm humanistic touches - even the bumbling, shape-changing fiends from Hell are as clueless as the humans. 7 p.m. August 26. Czech Heritage Society Library and Archives, 4117 Willowbend. For information, call 713-349-0500 or visit www.czechheritage.org. Free.
Wed., Aug. 26, 7 p.m., 2009

 
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