A film „Marbles“

A new Czech episodical film „MARBLES“ by Olga Dabrowská was released on May 1st 2008. MARBLES consists of short stories about what it really looks like when man and woman live together. From the first love to the first sexual encounter, from the first lie to the last one. The writer and director Olga Dabrowská humorously portrayed beginnings and a process of a romantic relationship.


The episodic film MARBLES consists of several short stories about how women manipulate with men. About subtle blackmailings, about crying, about tears, about the ability to sacrifice oneself for a dream, about sex as a service, about the way we can use empathy.

It all starts on the playground among children and death does not equal the end. As time goes by, a feminine mechanism of manipulation develops, shapes up, ripens until it reaches the stage of perfection. Individual short stories take place at a techno party as well as in a Catholic parsonage and they conclude in a content domestic routine of two old people which cannot be disrupted by anything – not even by death. The short stories about women of different age and lifestyle put together a story of one complete human life which was, thanks to the manipulation with others, lived according to the plan and at the same time and from the same reason wasted away.

MARBLES is a fresh humorous film about women loving men and women loving themselves at the expense of men. The four short stories take place in various settings and heroines are women of different age.

The first one – a prologue called THE WEDDING describes a seemingly innocent game played by little children on a playground, the second story MAMA’S LITTLE ANGEL portrays a group of adolescents at a techno party, the third story A MORAL IMPERATIVE takes us to a Catholic parsonage and the final story SLOWLY I AM FADING AWAY focuses on what is happening in a household of two pensioners.

According to Olga Dabrowska the film predicates: „About the matter-of-factness of a female egotism and the art of manipulation with men.“ The author of the film sends a hyperbolic message to all the males: „Dear men, beware of us! You want to abuse us. You want to possess us. You want to leave us. You stand no chance. It will be the other way round...“

The film was shot in September 2006, after the casting and acting rehearsals for the most difficult short story MAMA’S LITTLE ANGEL. The shooting itself started with the story called THE WEDDING. Production manager Petr Koza remarks: We had only two shooting days for this short story. In October and November we were shooting the story SLOWLY I AM FADING AWAY and afterwards there was quite a long pause during which we were preparing the parsonage story. We needed a spring atomsphere, sunshine, it was supposed to be an Easter story. It took us seven days in April to shoot it. Then we got back to the MAMA’S LITTLE ANGEL story, where the casting was almost complete but its preparation took us the whole summer and because some of the actors were not available and preparations of the techno party were very demanding, the shooting started as late as in September 2007.“

The film version of the author film MARBLES was preceded by several versions of a screenplay. Due to the authenticity Olga Dabrowská used to alter the script during the shooting itself and she creatively kept offering different variations of the situations and consulted the dialogues with actors as well as with the extras. Shooting this film took twenty days in the years 2006 and 2007. The locations were on different places in Prague and its surroundings. One of the trivia facts which might be worth mentioning is that in each of the short stories there appeared some member of the crew among the extras. The crew found the location of parsonage in Borotice village near Nový Knín. The representatives of a friary called Ordo Militaris Crucigerorum cum rubea stella willingly sublet this parsonage, especially after they learned that the film deals with an egoism of women. For the techno party the filmmakers used the premises of former Poldi factory in Kladno. Industry Movie Show launched on September 15th 2007 and the participants were told in advance that the footage taken at this techno party will be used in a film. Two hundred people created a crowd of extras in the most demanding scene, three cameras were used and the shooting itself took three days and three nights non-stop. The shooting was very tough, techno beats were thudding until dawn, several participants of the party had problems with alcohol and soft drugs, citizens of Kročehlavy village could not sleep and lodged over 150 complaints against the party and despite all this it all ended well.

In charge of the camera in MARBLES were two directors of photography Diviš Marek and David Čálek who were taking turns. . Diviš Marek is known as a director of photography who cooperates with director Bohdan Sláma, together they made a film trilogy Divoké Včely (The Wild Bees) /2001/, Štěstí (Something like Happiness) /2005/ and Venkovský učitel /2008/. He also worked on projects of producer Čestmír Kopecký Nuda v Brně (Boredom in Brno) /2003/ and Hrubeš a Mareš jsou kamarádi do deště /2005/ and lastly on a film...A bude hůř (It´s Gonna Get Worse) /2007/.

David Čálek worked on feature films Rychlé pohyby očí (Rapid Eye Movement) /1998/, Kanárek (Canary) /1999/ or on a documentary film by Věra Chytilová Pátrání po Ester /2005/.

Čestmír Kopecký took a role of the producer in the film MARBLES. Kopecký is well known for his ability to discover new Czech filmmakers and also he regularly cooperates with writer and director Petr Zelenka. And it was Olga Dabrowská who participated in three Zelenka’s films.