Holiday Makers tells the story of a disparate bunch of Czech vacationers thrown together on a one-week package bus holiday to an Adriatic seaside resort. The mesmerizing underwater opening sequence invites the audience to look at what lies beneath the surface of things, as magic can happen in unexpected bursts and unlikely places. The strange ensemble of characters is led by a plain-faced, witty woman who is taking her ornery middle-aged parents on holiday. Also along for the trip are a minor pop star, a gay couple, a pair of teenage sexpots, a homophobic mom and dad and their two kids, and a science-fiction-obsessed diving enthusiast who gets turned on by women swimming underwater. A fetching tour guide and a sadistic bus driver round out the motley crew. While this may seem like the perfect formula for a holiday in hell, the film is, in fact, a funny, sly, and tender look at the yearning for human connection and all the ensuing complications that such a project entails. Entanglements, adventures, and misadventures multiply as couples are made, unmade, almost made, and then broken up. And yet, against all odds, the vacation proves transformative by the week's end.
Born in 1972, Czech director Jiri Vejdelek has been writing and directing comedies and films for 10 years. From 1996-2002, he studied at the Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, where he directed several award-winning shorts. Included among them is Sweets (1999), which won the best bachelor's award at the 2000 FAMU Festival and was screened at Cannes in the short film program. In 2005, he directed a popular Czech television series, Redakce, which received two ELSA nominations for best director and best drama. Before becoming a filmmaker, he was a draftsman and storyteller for Dikobraz and Podvobraz, two popular humor magazines.