valerie and her week of wonders

I have been meaning to watch this Czech movie from 1970 since Caitlin first posted about it around Hallowe'en a couple of years ago.  She posted some stills that creeped me out so much that I thought "I have to watch this."  I love creepy movies.

Recently Anja posted about it here, and despite the fact that I work in a library with a well-stocked audio-visual library, I never got around to signing it out. Part of the reason why is because watching movies on a 10" laptop isn't really ideal, but we have a proper, hand-me-down television set and a DVD player now (although I am still so annoyed that we can no longer get PBS via rabbit ears).

Anyhow, Geoff and I currently live around the corner from Marquee Video, which I am so excited about; we stopped in the other day and I rented Valerie and Her Week of Wonders.  I watched it last night and it was fantastic.  It made absolutely no sense to me, but that didn't matter.   It was captivating, it was creepy, the look of it was beautiful -- everything I want in a film, really.  I also adore the way the Czech pronounce "Valerie."  Kind of "Vah-leree-yay."  It's singsong-y.

Broadcast, a band I really love, have a song called "Valerie," which was inspired by the movie.  It's based on a theme that is repeated throughout.  I've been listening to this song since 2003 without realizing its original inspiration!


  1. This looks amazing. Never heard of it. Must see it!

  2. hahah ok literally last night i was asked to list my favorite movies, and i got to thinking about that post i made way back and wondering if anyone really watched any of them and how i really wish they would hahaha. they are all really good. i'm glad you enjoyed this, but i'm certainly not surprised! :)

    i had that same broadcast "whoa" haha

  3. yay, glad you finally got to see it!! So good. I like it more each time I see it.

  4. It's something I've wanted to see for a while too. I really love the song 'Echo's Answer' by Broadcast.. it's the tiniest bit creepy, but in the best way!

  5. loveeee valerie. it's also mentioned in an of montreal song (of course), but I can't remember which one!

  6. Yay!
    Glad you're loving Valerie. I have it on dvd and it's a favorite. Isn't the soundtrack fantastic?! And I totally discovered the connection with the Broadcast song, after the fact, the same way you did. Twinses ;)

  7. Chelsea: I really liked it! It was surreal, with vampires and all kinds of stuff thrown in for good measure.

    Caitlin: That's so funny! I think I'm going to track down a copy of the book, too.

    Anja: Thanks for the reminder!

    Hannah: I love Broadcast. When I cut my bangs the first time I was picturing the cover of Tender Buttons.

    Teacup: You know, I've never actually listened to Of Montreal. Not sure why, really.

    Chad: Twinses!!

  8. I know...what's up with not being able to get PBS with rabbit ears anymore? My husband and I are so sad (but refuse to spend $ on cable).

  9. Anonymous26.5.09

    I am Czech and know this 60´czech movie wave. Recommend you also Sedmikrasky (Daisies) by Vera Chytilova, or Morgiana by Juraj Herz.

  10. I watched this movie after seeing it praised in this and other blogs. I must say I'm deeply disappointed - too much symbolism and confusion, no real plotline, terrible acting and it drags on for eternity. They could have done something a lot better with some of the central ideas, about a quarter of the fairytale allusions and the aesthetics of the original - the DVD transfer is missing out on that too because of bad white balance... Also, while I'm not normally a prude or conservative person when it comes to sexuality (everyone, do what pleases you as long as it doesn't harm anyone!), I still find it questionable to have a 13-year-old actress undress completely and French-kiss all her movie-relatives... Pretty pictures aren't everything, really.