Valerie a týden divů (Valerie and Her Week of Wonders). 1970. Czechoslovakia. Directed by Jaromil Jireš. Screenplay by Jires, Ester Krumbachová. With Jaroslava Schallerová, Helena Anýzová, Petr Kopriva. 35mm courtesy Národní filmový archiv. In Czech; English subtitles. 77 min.
A singular representation of the disruptive power of female sexuality, Valerie and Her Week of Wonders injects abject darkness into the fairytale story of a young girl’s coming of age. As Valerie discovers that a pair of her pearl earrings hold an intoxicating power, her quaint village becomes a treacherous landscape as lecherous priests, vampires, and witches take a selfish interest in possessing her. This striking standout of the Czechoslovak New Wave is an unforgettable gothic daydream, highlighting the disturbing interplay between Valerie’s own sexual awakening and the predatory desires of those around her.