LEMONADE JOE (aka: Limonadovy Joe aneb Konska opera)

(director/writer: Oldrich Lipsky; screenwriter: novel by Jiri Brdecka/Jiri Brdecka cinematographer: Vladimír Novotný; editor: Miroslav Hájek /Jitka Sulcová ; music: Vlastimil Hála /Jan Rychlík ; cast: Karel Fiala (Lemonade Joe), Jiri Steimar (Kolaloka – Joe’s Father), Rudolph Deyl (Doug Badman – Owner of Trigger Whisky Saloon), Kveta Fialova (Tornado Lou), Karel Effa (Panjo Kid), Olga Schoberova (Winifried Goodman), Bohus Záhorský (Ezra Goodman, Winifried’s father), Milos Kopecký (Horace Badman , bad guy),Josef Hlinomaz (Grimpo), Oldrich Lukes (Sheriff); Runtime: 84; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Jaroslav Jilovec; Allied Artists Pictures; 1969-Czechoslovakia-in Czech with English subtitles)

 “‘ gentle Czech parody of Hollywood B-Westerns.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

An amusing and gentle Czech parody of Hollywood B-Westerns that is easy to take even if it makes little sense. Oldrich Lipsky(“I Killed Einstein”/”Straw Hat”/”Six Bears And A Clown”) directs and co-writes with the author Jiri Brdecka. Lemonade Joe was a popular short-story character in Czech magazines in the 1940s. The stories were written by Brdecka.

The teetotaler singing cowboy, The Lemonade Kid (Karel Fiala), the western sales representative for Kolaloka and Son, rides into a dusty frontier town in Arizona called Stetson City to rescue the captives, Winifred Goodman (Olga Schoberova) and her missionary father Ezra (Bohus Záhorský). They are held captives by gunslingers at Doug Badman’s (Rudolph Deyl) traditional Trigger Whiskey Saloon. The teetotaler missionaries run a rival place that only sells soda supplied by Kolaloka. When they again try competing against their criminal rivals, Doug’s vicious brother Horace (Milos Kopecký) stages a shoot-out and kills the sheriff (Oldrich Lukes). The gang kidnaps Winifred and trick Joe into drinking whiskey. While Joe’s unconscious, saloon girl Tornado Lou (Kveta Fialova) kills his tormentor and brings him back to life with lemonade. Joe then takes care of the baddies and in the end is confronted by a dark secret.

The pic comically skewers the Old West, Coca-Cola, and American capitalism.