Night of Polish Movies (Part 1 of 2)

polishfilms1Night movies marathon is an event I don’t participate in too often. I myself watch movies at night a lot, sometimes with friends, but I’m not talking about those. I mean those officially organized, in cinemas or other culture centres. The first one I had a chance to attend in 2003, when first “Kill Bill” hit the cinemas. A Tarantino night was organized with this one and two (actually, one and a quarter) of his other films I hadn’t seen: “Jackie Brown” and “Four Rooms”. The second one was several weeks ago.

I those eight years of meantime no marathons that were organized contained all films I was interested in or all I haven’t seen. An especially horrifying idea was a night with five “Saw” movies – a friend’s wife attended it and believe me, I wouldn’t want to be in his skin when she returned…

Anyway, it wasn’t until three Fridays ago that a marathon with all interesting movies that I haven’t seen took place, and this time – even though I’m eight years older and no longer in a shape when I could easily stay awake until dawn – I gathered some friends and went to see it.

This time the idea was to show four Polish movies, or rather, to be exact, at least co-produced by Poland and made by Polish directors. Those movies were: “In Darkness” by Agnieszka Holland, “Carnage” by Roman Polański, “Wymyk” (internationally known as “Courage”) by Greg Zgliński, and “Sala Samobójców” (Suicide Room”) by Jan Komasa.

Couple of words on each of them:

1. “In Darkness”

“In Darkness” gained an Oscar nomination, but I don’t really believe it’ll win – there were quite many movies about holocaust and saving the Jews during the second World War recently, and they all gained a lot of attention and awards, so I’m afraid the Academy wouldn’t want to focus on this one too. Which is unfortunate, because the movie is really good, very well made – fantastic art direction and production values, great attention to detail (I especially liked the variety of languages spoken in the movie – everyone spoke in real language their characters would speak in: German, Ukrainian, Polish, both regular and Lwowian dialect…) and amazing acting, mainly done by Robert Więckiewicz (but more about him later).

Beforehand I heard that the movie is boring, but it wasn’t for me – it’s one of those movies where nothing that much is happening on screen, but you still sit on the edge of the seat, waiting for some shit to hit the fan (and there is a lot of that, since it’s about a guy hiding a group of Jews from the Nazis in the sewers of Lwów for months). The movie is really worth seeing, but believe it or nor, it was actually the worst (or least good) of the night. That isn’t saying it’s bad – it’s just that the others are even better!

(continued)

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