provincial waiter Jan Dite may be short in height but his aspirations
are nothing but high when it comes to ambition. For Jan is determined
to become a millionaire and he knows just how to do it. Continually
watching and listening to his superiors and his high-flying,
big-spending customers, Jan learns how to succeed by pleasing others.
His progress sees him leaving his first job in a bar and moving first
to a high-class brothel and, finally, to an elegant, art nouveau
restaurant in Prague. But things are about to change. It’s
1930s and Hitler’s troops are breaking Czechoslovakia apart.
During these troubled times, Jan meets and falls in love with Lise, a
German girl fanatically proud of her Aryan roots. No sooner have they
married than Lise enlists in the German army and heads off to fight on
the front line. Fortunately, she returns safely and in possession of a
fortune in rare stamps that the dispossessed Jewish families had
allegedly left behind. Tragedy strikes, however, but Jan briefly
realises his dream of becoming a millionaire before the new Communist
regime sentences him to 15 years in prison – one year for
his millions. Upon his release, and now an old man, he is sent to live
in an abandoned border town, where he finds the leisure to reflect upon
the events that shaped his remarkable and eventful life.
I SERVED THE KIND OF ENGLAND is an enthralling and delightfully
life-affirming comedy about an immensely likeable and sympathetic
character whose infectious passion for living will charm even the most