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Empties (2007)

Vratné lahve (original title)
A comic love story about a man who refuses to accept that old age is empty of love, meaning and value to society.

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(story), (screenplay)
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9 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
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Josef Tkaloun
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Eliska Tkalounová
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Rezác
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Helenka
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Robert Landa
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Úlisný
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Ptácková (as Nella Boudová)
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vedoucí Subrt
Vera Tichánková ...
Lamková
...
Cárkovaná
Robin Soudek ...
Tomík
...
Karel
...
Kvardová
...
Wasserbauer
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Moderátorka v rádiu
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Storyline

A comic love story about a man who refuses to accept that old age is empty of love, meaning and value to society.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A comedy about the fullness of life.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

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Details

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Release Date:

8 March 2007 (Czech Republic)  »

Also Known As:

Povratne boce  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the film there is visible a TV program with a highlighted film Kolya (1996), made by the same duo: Jan Sverák (director) and Zdenek Sverák (writer and a main character in both, a father of Jan). See more »

Goofs

Eliska is supposed to be a professional teacher of German, yet in the German sentences she speaks in the course of the movie, her German has a heavy Czech accent, much worse than that of her supposed student. And, when Eliska is asked to translate the sentence, "I work for the city administration," her German translation makes no grammatic sense ("an der Stadtamt"). See more »

Connections

Referenced in Vsechnopárty: Episode dated 27 June 2014 (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

 
It's never too late for a career change
11 May 2008 | by (Upstate New York) – See all my reviews

Vratné lahve (2007), directed by Jan Sverák, written by Zdenek Sverák, was shown in the U.S. with the title "Empties." The title derives from a second "career," undertaken late in life, by the protagonist Josef (Zdenek Sverák). Josef resigns from his position as a teacher and takes a job accepting returned glass bottles at a supermarket. Complications ensue. Josef isn't exactly an ideal worker, but he does establish a rapport with his fellow employees and with some of the customers.

Josef is married, but he and his wife are tired of each other. (Incidentally, his wife is played by Daniela Kolárová, who looks like the Czech Hellen Mirren.) Josef and his wife are both contemplating adultery, although that's not as easy for them as it might sound.

"Empties" is a comedy, but a comedy with a sad and bitter undertone. Everyone is looking for love, romance, and understanding, but mostly they're looking in the wrong places. Still, the film is worth seeing, especially because of the wonderful acting by Zdenek Sverák, who was outstanding in the film "Kolya" ten years ago, and is equally outstanding in "Empties."

Incidentally, the identical names of the actor/writer and director are not coincidental--they are father and son. That must lead to some interesting moments on the set.

We saw this film at the Rochester High Falls International Film Festival. It will work pretty well on a small screen. It's definitely worth seeking out and seeing.


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