Kolya, also known as Kolja, is a Czech Republic 1996 comedy drama film that was directed by Jan Sverák. The screenplay was written by Zdenek Sverák. The movie is in both Czech and Russian, for there are some characters that can only speak Russian. It has a runtime of 105 minutes, and was released in the US with a rating of PG-13. Kolya won many awards including the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 1996.

Louka is a celloist in Czechoslovakia at a time when the U.S.S.R. still existed. Due to some of his brother, and his own stupidity he has become untrustworthy in the eyes of the government and is no longer allowed to visit West Germany and was blacklisted from the Czechoslovakian Philharmonic. These days the only places that he can play at are funerals, and that hardly pays. One of his friends and employers offers him a job that will pay him enough for him to get a car and pay off some debts. All he has to do is marry a Russian woman, that wants Czechoslavakian papers. At first he refuses both on his dislike of marriage and his own womanizing tendencies. However, he soon gives in to the fake marriage.

Unfortunatly, almost immediatly after the marriage, his new wife emigrates to West Germany, which is bad enough in the eyes of the government. Also, the only way that she was able to emigrate was leave her child behind, who she leaves with her mother. But her mother suffers a stroke soon after, and the medics bring the boy to Louka.

Louka is stuck with this Russian child who can't speak Czech, and Louka can't speak Russian. They both have to learn to adapt, and live with each other.

Kolja is a very touching film and beautifully done. Louka is quite the skirt chaser and cynical comedian. One of the things that foreign films like this one tend to do is that there is an obvious plot, in this case that Louka wants a car, but there is the true plot, which is that Louka needs to learn how to care and love. These emotions are wonderfully done and any person should be able to easily watch this film. The film is also a following of the collapse of the U.S.S.R. from the Czech perspective.

One might also notice that there are quite a few family members in this film. Zdenek Sverák who wrote the script, also played Louka. He is also the father of the director, Jan Sverák, as well as being the grandfather of Andrei Chalimon, who played Kolya. With many foreign films, the making of the movie can often be a family thing.

Main Cast:
Zdenek Sverák - Louka
Andrei Chalimon - Kolja
Libuse Safránková - Klara
Ondrej Vetchý - Broz
Stella Zázvorková - Maminka
Ladislav Smoljak - Houdek
Irina Livanova - Nadezda
Sylvia Suvadova - Blanka
Liliya Malkina - Tamara
Karel Hermánek - Musil
Petra Spalková - Pasa
Nella Boudová - Brozova
René Pribil - Pokorny
Miroslav Táborský - Novotny
Slávka Budínová - Bustikova
Jirí Sovák - Rozicka

Kolya also has a soundtrack availible. It is mainly composed of classical instrumental and religous pieces and sounds quite beautiful.

  1. Together
  2. Little Train
  3. New Shoes
  4. Alone On The Underground
  5. Alone
  6. The Lord is My Sheperd
  7. The Fever
  8. Alone
  9. Alone
  10. The Wooden Top
  11. Together
  12. On The Run
  13. Together
  14. The Lord is My Sheperd by Antonín Dvorák
  15. Barcarole by Josef Suk
  16. The American Quartet in F, 2nd Movement by Antonín Dvorák
  17. Tabor by Bedrich Smetana

Sources:
http://www.amazon.com
http://www.imdb.com

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