0_1_0 - Piotr Łazarkiewicz
A seaside town, a new day. The local radio announcer greets his listeners, warns them of an approaching hurricane, but also reassures them: "look out the window and you will feel nothing can happen." Is he right? Throughout the day the camera will wander all over the town, seeking out people who don't know one another, who are in no way connected. In one house, a sister tries to make contact with her drug-addict brother by buying him fixes with their father's money after he threw his son out of the house. At another place, a couple are about to make love when the man reveals he is a transsexual after a sex-change operation. And in the evening a young lawyer tries to persuade his partner to attend a business dinner on which his career might depend. Seven similar couples are shown - starting points for stories of man-woman relationships. The people involved come from different backgrounds and have different prospects. What they have in common is that at one point they took part or witnessed a traffic accident in the town's centre. That's not all, though - they all keep in touch, semi-anonymously, via the 0_1_0 internet forum, a kind of therapy group. Here, they can finally speak the truth - a truth of which their nearest and dearest don't have an inkling.
0_1_0 was the last project by Piotr Łazarkiewicz, who passed away in June 2008. A prominent figure in the filmmaking community, Łazarkiewicz was seen as a director always searching for his own path. Active in many fields - from feature films and documentaries, through radio and television theatre, to the stage and even opera - this time he took on a text by Krzysztof Bizio, a young writer from Szczecin, the hope of new Polish drama. According to theatre critics, Bizio experiments successfully with form, searching for something to match the surrounding reality: a world coming out of its millennium shock and art coming to terms with the everyday existence of postmodernism. Each sequence in the film is a kind of metaphor of the contemporary world: the nameless heroes are around thirty, they have been placed in the same location, and are subjected at the same time to the pressures of daily life. How will they cope? How will they save themselves? How will they find their place in relations with other people?
Łazarkiewicz said of the film in his last interview:
"I looked for a simple catchphrase, a sign which would express the opposition: yes - no, good - evil, black - white. Krzysztof Bizio, the author of the play, or rather the few loose scenes on which the script is based, came up with the idea of the zero-one system - after all, this code is present everywhere, starting with bar codes. That's why '0_1_0' can be understood as: isn't - is - isn't, minus - plus - minus, evil - good - evil; or completely differently." ("Gazeta Wyborcza", 21 June 2008)
Perhaps that's why Łazarkiewicz doesn't seek answers to the above questions. Having put together a team of excellent young actors - his friends from the stage, including Maria Peszek, Maria Seweryn, Małgorzata Buczkowska, Rafał Maćkowiak, Rafał Mohr, and Tomasz Tyndyk - he attacks viewers with them, awakening admiration but also compassion, anxiety and understanding, disgust and emotion. Taken by surprise, viewers can defend themselves from the attack by closing their eyes or responding to questions with new questions, but there's no escaping one observation. This is a world of contemporary people, with huge technical means and huge self-knowledge at their disposal, but still unable to cope with their own emotions. This is the world of people around us or perhaps - simply - our world.
- 0_1_0. Poland 2008. Director: Piotr Łazarkiewicz, script: Krzysztof Bizio, Piotr Łazarkiewicz based on a play by Krzysztof Bizio, cinematography: Wojciech Todorow, music: Antoni Łazarkiewicz, set design: Katarzyna Sobańska-Strzałkowska, costumes: Dorota Roqueplo, editing: Anna Marta Waern, sound: Jacek Hamela, Leszek Freund. Cast: Wojciech Brzeziński (Maciek), Anna Maria Buczek (Anna), Małgorzata Buczkowska (Lena), Marta Chodorowska (Marta), Marcin Kęszycki (guard), Julia Kijowska (Julia), Redbad Klynstra (Łuka), Piotr Ligienza (Tomek), Rafał Maćkowiak (Filip), Rafał Mohr (Jacek), Maria Peszek (Ilona), Magdalena Popławska (Maria), Maria Seweryn (Kasia), Dariusz Toczek (Piotr), Tomasz Tyndyk (Sebastian), Wiesław Komasa (announcer). Production: Skorpion Art, Media Brigade, Polsat Television. Co-financed by: Polish Film Institute. Distribution: Gutek Film. Duration: 86 min. Released on 14 November 2008.
Author: Konrad J. Zarębski, October 2008.
- 2008 - Award from the Polish Filmmakers' Association at the Polish Film Festival in Gdynia, for Piotr Łazarkiewicz for "a creative portrayal of contemporary times".