"Andrzej Munk Retrospective" - London, Riverside Studios, 3 January - 17 January 2007.
One of the key figures of "Polish school" of filmmaking, teacher of Roman Polanski and Jerzy Skolimowski at the Lodz Film School, Munk pioneered a new type of cinema in Poland. Rejecting the social realism optimism, he portrayed Polish nationalism and heroism through satire and absurdity. Although he died young, the few films he made constitute a coherent work of a nonconformist whose aim was to show the stupidity that flowed through mid-century Poland.
Wednesday, 3 January 2007
- 7.00 pm - THE MEN OF THE BLUE CROSS / BLEKITNY KRZYZ - dir. Andrzej Munk (1955, 55 m) with Wojciech Siemion, Stanislaw Byrcyn-Gasienica
Munks take on the heroic national story of a group of Polish mountaineers who in 1945 ferried wounded Czech partisans through German lines and into a safe haven in Poland.
- 8.20 pm - EROICA - dir. Andrzej Munk (1958, 78 m)with Edward Dziewonski, Barbara Polomska
A poignant satire on the vagaries of heroism in wartime and "the bitter irony of Polish fate", told in two parts - the first set in Warsaw during the Uprising and the second in a prisoner-of-war camp for officers of the Uprising.
Wednesday, 10 January 2007
- 6.45 pm - BAD LUCK / Zezowate szczescie - dir. Andrzej Munk (1960, 107 m)with Bogumil Kobiela, Edward Dziewonski
The hilarious story of Jan Piszczyk, a Polish Everyman, trying to keep up with the changing zeitgeist but always finding himself in the wrong place at the wrong time. This semi-tragic comedy has also been read as a philosophical tale, making it one of the most important films of the Polish School movement.
- 8.55 pm - CITIZEN PISZCZYK / OBYWATEL PISZCZYK - dir. Andrzej Kotkowski (1989, 101 m)with Jerzy Stuhr, Maria Pakulnis
The follow-up to Bad Luck and of the tragic-comic life of its anti-hero Jan Piszczyk. Now released from prison, Piszczyk has to make his life in a Poland which is going through a major transformation following the death of Stalin. A cruel satire of a totalitarian society.
Wednesday, 17 January 2007
- 6.30 pm - A VISIT TO THE OLD CITY / SPACEREK STAROMIEJSKI - dir. Andrzej Munk (1958, 18 m)
An impressionistic tour of the Old Town in Warsaw, in the company of a ten-year old girl. Lyrical, funny and full of surprises.
- 6.50 pm - MAN ON THE TRACK / CZLOWIEK NA TORZE - dir. Andrzej Munk (1956, 80 m)with Kazimierz Opalinski, Zygmunt Maciejewski
Using a mix of social realism and film noir styles, the film tells the story of an old railway engineer killed by a speeding train, whose identity the authorities are trying to determine. But everyone they interrogate has a different vision of the old man.
- 8.45 pm - PASSENGER / Pasazerka - dir. Andrzej Munk (1961-63, 58 m)with Aleksandra Slaska, Anna Ciepielewska
Widely considered a masterpiece, Passenger has been described as one of the best films ever made about the Holocaust. Munk tragically died in an accident during filming, aged just 39. His colleagues decided to complete the film to what they believed were Munk's intentions and, over a period of two years, assembled it using the existing footage, still photographs and a voice-over narration. A unique film.
- 9.45 pm - THE LAST PICTURES / OSTATNIE ZDJECIA. BRULION - dir. Andrzej Brzozowski (2001, 47 m)
40 years after Munk's death, Brzozowski, who worked with Munk on Passenger as his assistant, reconstructs the events that took place during the shooting of this film. A beautiful tribute to Munk and one of the last films made by Brzozowski.
The Passenger will be introduced by the film critic and historian, Philip Kemp.
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