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April 21–27, 2017

Chicago Premiere

I, Olga Hepnarovà
(Jà, Olga Hepnarovà)

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Film still: I, Olga Hepnarova Film still: I, Olga Hepnarova


Best Actress
Best Film
Best Director
Czech Lions
"Anchored by a startling performance by Michalina Olszanska...I, Olga Hepnarovà is an austere, hypnotic story of sadness, madness and murder"
  —New York Times
"A stoic and sobering character study"
  —Village Voice

Olga Hepnarovà was a young, lonely lesbian outsider from a coldhearted family who couldn't play the part society desired of her. Her paranoid self-examination and inability to connect with other people eventually drove her over the edge of humanity when she was only twenty-two years old. The film shows the human being behind the mass murderer without glorifying or downplaying the terrible crime she committed.

Guided by her letters we delve into Olga's psyche and witness the worsening of her loneliness and alienation as we reconstruct the events that led up to her disastrous actions. Before the murder, she informed two newspapers to explain her action as revenge for all the hatred against her by her family and the world. She was found to be sane and sentenced to death as the execution took place on March 12, 1975 in the Pankrác Prison in Prague. Although the story is set in the 1970s, young people today continue to face problems of not belonging, being different, and being bullied because of race, gender or sexual orientation.

Directed by Petr Kazda and Tomás Weinreb, Czech Republic/Poland/Slovakia/France, 2016, 105 mins. In Czech with English subtitles


  • Fri., April 21 at 6:30 & 8:30 pm
  • Sat., April 22 at 3:45, 5:45 & 7:45 pm
  • Sun., April 23 at 1:45, 3:45 & 5:45 pm
  • Tues.–Thurs., April 25–27 at 6:30 & 8:30 pm
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$10 general admission

$5 for Facets Members

The Facets Cinémathèque is located at 1517 W. Fullerton Ave. in Chicago. Call the Cinémathèque Hotline at 773.281.4114 for the latest schedule, showtimes and updates.

For all Cinémathèque inquiries, contact Charles Coleman at 773.281.9075 or

  • John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
  • Artworks: National Endowment for the Arts
  • Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences
  • Comer Family Foundation
  • Bloomberg Philanthropies
  • Alphawood Foundation
  • Polk Bros. Foundation