Tag Archives: Poland

Der Dibuk / The Dybbuk (1937) Michal Waszynski, Avrom Morewski, Ajzyk Samberg, Mojzesz Lipman, Drama, Fantasy

Der Dibuk (1937)
In a Polish shtetl, two young men who have grown up together betrothe their unborn children, ignoring the advice of a mysterious traveler not to pledge the lives of future generations. Soon after, one of them dies, and the wife of the other dies in childbirth. The children grow up in different towns, without ever knowing of the betrothal, but the power of the vow leads them to meet each other when they are marriageable. The young woman, Leah, is promised to another man, but Channon, the son of the father who died, is a practitioner of mysticism, and seeks to win his bride through sorcery.

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Rece do góry / Hands Up! (1981) Jerzy Skolimowski

Rece do gory (1981)
Censored by the Polish authorities, this film was reedited and new footage added. It begins with a sci-fi motif: abstract images and electronic music take the viewer from ruins of Lebanon to the set of Voelker Schloendorf “The Forgery” where Skolimowski plays a lead role. Another shift takes us to London, where Skolimowski shoots a street scene. There are also shifts into the past with the old footage, featuring a score of Polish actors in a setting resembling Kantor’s experimental theatre.

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Rewers / Reverse (2009) Borys Lankosz

Rewers (2009)
A story about women, set in the present and in 1950s Warsaw. The main character is Sabina, a quiet, shy woman who has just turned thirty. Clearly, she lacks a man in her life. Her mother knows all about it and tries at all costs to find her daughter a good candidate for a husband. The whole situation is controlled by the grandmother, an eccentric lady with a sharp tongue from whom no secret can be concealed. Successive admirers arrive at the pre-war tenement where the women live, but Sabina is interested in none of them. One day, appearing out of nowhere, comes the charming, intelligent, and terribly good-looking Bronislaw. His presence will spark off a series of unexpected events revealing the darker side of the women’s nature.

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Vabank II czyli riposta / Vabank II (1985) Juliusz Machulski, Jan Machulski, Leonard Pietraszak, Witold Pyrkosz, Comedy, Crime

Vabank II, czyli riposta (1984)
A sequel to “Vabank” (1981), introduces the same characters entangled in a duel between a former safecracker and a crooked bank manager. Imprisoned ex-banker Kramer breaks out with the help of recently released accomplice and wants to get even with his nemesis, Kwinto. Kwinto calls up the old gang to respond to this threat. In the end, Kramer seemingly victorious heads to Switzerland by a prearranged flight to Zurich. First, however, they have to cross the German border. They bribe the Nazi border guards, board the plane and land in what they think is Switzerland, only to find out that the film-team has outwitted them with sets and actors and the police is waiting for them.

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Zemsta / The Revenge (2002) Andrzej Wajda

Zemsta (2002)
A winter day at a Polish castle, half owned by a fatalistic notary and half by a volcanic old soldier’s niece. The old soldier, Cupbearer, and the notary are sworn enemies, which may doom the love between the niece, Klara, and the notary’s son, Waclaw. On this day, the tongue-tied Cupbearer asks a braggart courtier, Papkin, to sue on his behalf for the hand of the widow Hanna. Papkin succeeds and the wedding is set for the next day. In response, the notary plots to marry Waclaw to the widow to upend Cupbearer’s plans. When Cupbearer learns of this perfidy, he responds with his own plot. Will there be poison, a duel, kidnapping, and imprisonment; or, will fate bring another solution?

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