GenreComedy, Drama ScreenplayAndrzej Jakimowski WriterAndrzej Jakimowski LanguagePolish
Release dateOctober 26, 2007 (2007-10-26) (Poland) CastDamian Ul, Ewelina Walendziak, Tomasz Sapryk Similar moviesLove Stories (1997), The Constant Factor (1980), The Real End of the Great War (1957), The Collector (2005), All that I Love (2009)
Tricks, (Polish: Sztuczki) is a 2007 Polish film written, directed and produced by Andrzej Jakimowski starring Damian Ul, Ewelina Walendziak and Tomasz Sapryk. Tricks is Andrzej Jakimowski's follow up to Squint Your Eyes (Zmruż oczy), his 2002 debut.
A charming bittersweet narrative unfolds from director Andrzej Jakimowski. This is the story of siblings Stefek, 6, and Elka, 18, along with Elka's car mechanic boyfriend Jerzy during one sun-drenched summer. The siblings live with their shopkeeper mother. Their father has left their mother for another woman, unaware of Stefek's existence. After a chance encounter at the local railway station, and despite a denial by his sister that this was his father, Stefek decides to challenge fate to engineer another meeting. He believes that the chain of events he sets in motion will help him get closer to his father who abandoned his mother. His sister Elka teaches him how to bribe fate with small sacrifices. Tricks played, coupled with a number of coincidences eventually bring the father to the mother's shop but the long-awaited re-union does not immediately materialise as expected. As a last chance Stefak tries his good luck with the most risky of his tricks.
Damian Ul as Stefek
Ewelina Walendziak as Elka
Tomasz Sapryk as Father of Stefek and Elka
Rafal Guzniczak as Jerzy
Iwona Fornalczyk as Mother of Stefek and Elka
Joanna Liszowska as Violka
Andrzej Golejewski as Homeless
Grzegorz Stelmaszewski as Turek
Simeone Matarelli as Leone
Distribution and response
Tricks received a warm reception from the audience at the Venice Film Festival whilst at the same time gaining critics' approval. Iain Millar from the American channel Bloomberg wrote in his review: "The success of Sztuczki is due mostly to the incredible intuition of Jakimowski as a director. Although not nominated for the bigger awards, Tricks received attention from many film festivals. The film was chosen as Poland's official submission to the 81st Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film.