Ropáci (1988) Poster


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One to watch over and over again
SusanUK13 May 2002
I first saw Ropaci in Oberhausen, Germany, when Jan Sverak entered it into the International Short Film Festival there and won the Till Eulenspiegel award for the best satirical film. It's a wonderful spoof documentary following a team on its quest for the oil gobbler, an animal that has evolved to be the perfect denizen of a polluted world. Loathed by the locals for its voracious habit of eating anything plastic, from wellington boots to the protective sleeves farmers put round their saplings to prevent them being eaten by other animals, the ropaci is an elusive specimen and has the team - and thus the audience - intrigued. Finally, they catch it on film - and then manage to capture a young one that they want to take back home with them. The perils of their journey from the pollution-ridden Bohemian basin back through the clean, fresh air of the forest prove too much for the little creature and they come up with an ingenious way of saving it. This is a very clever, very funny film that I would love to have a copy of so that I could watch it again. As with many good satires, there's a lot of serious thought behind what makes it funny. Jan Sverak is a genius. We should see more of his work outside his own country. If you ever get a chance to see this one, don't miss it!
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False or true?
acorral-118 April 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I bought a 5 DVD Jan Sverak's collection in Czech Republic, containing five of his most representative films (Kolya, Elementary School, Dark Blue, The ride and Akumulator I). As an extra material (and for my fortune), producers included the short film Ropáci (Oil Globbers) about a very strange creature that lives in the most polluted conditions and eats every oil related material. This 20 minutes material is about the adventure of a questing team that is very interested to find out the "urban legend" of a strange animal that lives in the most adverse conditions. The first ten minutes present sequences that aware the viewer about proofs of live of this strange specimen. Then the Director presents the first animal in its habitat. Shocking images. This is a very good example that we can be surprised by new things everyday. When we think that we have seen everything there is a short film that show us that something new could surprise us. The question is: this creature is for real? Or is just a cinema trick? Well the best answer is to watch the film and make our best conclusions. Mine? Well I would rather have the position to believe that this is a new animal, but I will maintain my skepticism. Mr Sverak, thanks for this short film.
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