Andrzej Chyra in "W imię...", dir. Małgorzata Szumowska, photo.Michał Englert.
Małgorzata Szumowska’s latest picture is presented with the International Feature Film Award of the Dortmund festival of Women’s Films, beating more than a hundred other titles from 50 countries across the globe
The young Polish director’s film was honoured with the prize for its courage, excellent performance by the actors and a deep, humanist message. Among the members of the jury was the actress Marita Breuer, Marian Masone, an author and organiser of festival programmes, and the director Jocelyne Saab. Szumowska’s W Imię… / In the Name of… competed in an exclusive group of eight titles, alongside the Austrian-Polish-German coproduction of The Dead and the Living (Die Lebenden), directed by Barbara Albert.
In the Name of… tells the story of a priest who initiates a small creative meeting group for difficult youth in his parish. The good rector is very much liked by hs people, from whom he is nonetheless hiding his complicated past. In an interview, Szumowska explained that she portrayed her protagonist as a man struggling with loneliness. According to the director, the themes of the film are faith, doubt and the longing for feelings.
The screenplay was written by Szumowska in cooperation with Michał Englert, the cinematographer for the film. The lead role is played by Andrzej Chyra and the accompanying cast includes Mateusz Kościukiewicz, Maja Ostaszewska, Łukasz Simlat, Tomasz Schuchardt, Maria Maj, Olgierd Łukasiewicz and amateur actors.
The producer of the film is the Mental Disorder 4 company, with the coproduction from Canal+ and the participation of the Polski Instytut Sztuki Filmowej / Polish Film Institute. In the Name of... is distributed in Poland by Kino Świat, and distribution rights have been sold to over 20 countries worldwide, including the U.S.
The world premiere of the film took place at the 63rd International Berlin Film Festival, where it was honoured with the Teddy Award, following in the footsteps of such directors as Pedro Almodóvar, Derek Jarman, Francois Ozon, Lukas Moodysson and Todd Haynes, all previous laureates of the Berlin Teddy.
A Festival of Women’s Films
The International Festival of Women’s Cinema in Dortmund aims at exposing the work of women directors, who boldly prove that they posses a style of their own and a language that is proper to their personal narration. Previous laureates of the festival’s grand prize include Andrea Arnold, for the Red Road, Maren Ade who was honoured for her Everyone Else and Athina Rachel Tsangari, who had won the festival’s main prize for her picture Attenberg.
The International Festival of Women’s Cinema in Dortmund is the only one of its kind, and each year the programme boasts a list of about 80 films, both new and old, all of which are works directed by women.
In the Name of… is screened in cinemas across Poland from the 20th of September 2013.
Bartosz Staszyszczyn, translated by Paulina Schlosser, 17.04.2013
source: press release, PISF