Ida Receives Critics' Award in Toronto
no-image, Ida Receives Critics' Award in Toronto
Paweł Pawlikowski’s Ida, winner of the Golden Lion Award at the Gdynia Film Festival, was also honoured with the main prize in the Special Presentations section at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Still from Ida by Paweł Pawlikowski, TIFF
Toronto International Film Festival is an annual celebration of cinema, showcasing more than 300 films over 60 countries. Its 2013 edition ran from the 5th to the 15th of September. It Special Presentations section showcases high-profile world premieres and leading films – in 2013, it featured more than 80 titles, three of which were Polish productions. Apart from Ida, the winner of the Prize of the International Critics – the prestigious FIPRESCI – these were Wałęsa. Man of Hope by Andrzej Wajda and Burning Bush by Agnieszka Holland.
The screening of Ida in Toronto was its world premiere. It is the first film that Paweł Pawlikowski made in Poland. His previous productions included The Last Resort (2000), My Summer of Love (2004), and The Woman in the Fifth (2011), all of which have also been screened at the festival.
The plot of Ida is set in 1962. Ida (Agata Trzebuchowska) is an orphan raised in a convent, who is about to take her monastic vows. In order to make that happen, she needs to meet her only living relative: her aunt (Agata Kulesza), a passionate communist, who used to be involved in major political trials. The meeting of the two women opens up a story about identity, the Holocaust, human cruelty and the ruthless course of history.
Ida was described by Piers Handling in the festival materials:
This film is impeccably executed and judged, achingly written, finely structured and eloquently shot. Scene after scene is a masterly evocation of a time, a dilemma, and a defining historical moment; yet Ida is also personal, intimate, and human. The weight of history is everywhere, but the scale falls within the scope of a young woman learning about the secrets of her own past. This intersection of the personal with momentous historic events is gauged to perfection in a film that will have everyone reaching for superlatives.
The Toronto International Festival also featured a film by the Polish artist Wojciech Bąkowski, Dry Standpipe, presented as part of the Wavelenghts programme for experimental cinema. Bąkowski, born in 1979, is a director of animated films and videos, a visual artist, poet, musician and creator of audio performances and alternative music, affiliated with Poznań’s Stereo Gallery. As the press release of the festival announces, in this film, "condensing home videos into blocks of abstraction, Bąkowski creates a startling account of depression, numbness and paradoxical lucidity".
Sources: tiff.net, culture.pl, ed. AM, 16.09.2013