Hyena - Grzegorz Lewandowski
This stylistically sophisticated horror film with sensational cinematography by Arkadiusz Tomiak is Grzegorz Lewandowski's directing debut. It is genuine genre cinema, of the kind that is rare among Polish productions.
Hiena / Hyena is a dark tale about the fear of a teenage boy (Mały) whose father died in a mining accident. The boy lives with his mother in the wilds - an area dubbed dead ground, with only factory ruins and swampy meadows. The surroundings, pervaded with a sense of dread and corruption, influence his imagination. Every day he has to overcome his irrational fear of a hyena that allegedly lives in the rushes near his home.
Mały meets a mysterious stranger who promises to protect him from the hyena in exchange for food. Meanwhile, children are being killed in the nearby town. When a girl Mały knew is killed, the boy starts suspecting the strange man.
"At the foundation of 'Hiena' lies the anxiety and fear of the future that life in industrial Silesia brings", the director says.
Hiena / Hyena, Poland, 2006. Screenplay and directed by Grzegorz Lewandowski, cinematography by Arkadiusz Tomiak, music by Grzegorz Kaźmierczak, production design by Marek Zawierucha, Sebastian Gomułka, Rafał Waltenberger, producer: Paweł Rakowski, costume design by Maria Duffek. Featuring: Borys Szyc (man, father, ice-cream man), Jakub Romanowski (Mały), Magdalena Kumorek (Mother), Krzysztof Dracz (policeman), Aleksander Wysocki (Bryndza), Robert Wabich (Arak), Alicja Bałuk (Bożenka), Wojciech Grzywa (Kurczak), Franciszek Gurgul (Duży). Produced by Films Skorpion Art. Color, 85 min.
Author: Joanna Pawluśkiewicz, December 2006
- Festival of Polish Feature Films, Gdynia - Special Jury Prize, Best Screenplay, Award of the Chairman of Polish State Television, and Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Dorota Pomykała
- KSF "Młodzi i film" ["Youth and Film" Koszalin Film Meetings], Koszalin - Best Screenplay Award of the Association of Polish Filmmakers, Best Actor in a Starring Role for Krzysztof Stroiński
- International Festival of Documentary and Short Films, Kraków - "Srebrny Smok" / "Silver Dragon" for Best Feature Film
- Polish National Festival of Documentary and Short Films, Kraków - Honorable Mention for "warmth in the portrayal of man and his longings"