Film Archive

Countries (Film Archive)

15 Corners of the World

Documentary Film
Germany,
Poland
2014
75 minutes
subtitles: 
English

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Marta Golba, Erik Winker
Zuzanna Solakiewicz
Eugeniusz Rudnik
Zvika Gregory Portnoy
Mateusz Romaszkan
Zuzanna Solakiewicz
Marcin Lenarczyk
“Digital is better” – nowadays this title of a 90s track by the German band Tocotronic is a popular phrase we use without thinking. It’s a good thing then that our memories of the unique opportunities offered by analogue technology are now impressively revived by this film, which imaginatively demonstrates what spaces are disappearing in the wake of its loss. Its audiovisual journey starts at Polish Radio’s legendary experimental studio, which in the 1960s saw science fiction sounds created in a sound lab that looked like a spaceship’s control room. The head-strong composer Eugeniusz Rudnik, a former pioneer of electroacoustic music, is still working obsessively at his analogue editing station, trying to create unknown sound spheres in order to learn more about human nature. A discarded piece of tape, a voice, a stone, anything can become the basic material of a composition. Even a house – pending proof.

This tongue-in-cheek portrait of the artist as a sound tinkerer invites us on a visual expedition into his sound worlds. The camera, too, takes experimental choices, translates the acoustic dimensions into architecture, dance or landscapes, offers multiple interpretations and creates a synaesthetic experience for the big screen. No need to add that the film is also an ode to the analogue age.

Lars Meyer
International Programme 2016
21 x New York Piotr Stasik

Scared and wide-awake, enlightened and confused, horny and satisfied: people in NYC. The A-train provides the narrative pattern for fast-paced image flows and meditative passages. A pop pearl.

21 x New York

Documentary Film
Poland
2016
70 minutes
subtitles: 
English

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Agnieszka Wasiak
Piotr Stasik
Piotr Stasik
Dorota Wardęszkiewicz, Tomasz Wolski, Piotr Stasik
Michał Fojcik
Maybe 21 is a random number: portraits of 21 people who together are supposed to represent the totality of the more than eight million inhabitants of New York City? Not a valid number, every statistician would say, and be right. But cinema, thank God, is only marginally concerned with statistics – if at all.

“21 x New York” opens with a picture of the A-train approaching in a subway tunnel, thus creating the pattern for its own narrative by this confident allusion to one of the greatest pieces of 20th century jazz music. What we see next: scared and cheerful people, enlightened and confused ones, horny passers-by and satisfied couples. Extremely rapid switches between them, not so much contrasting as kaleidoscopic. The fast-paced flow of images is frequently interrupted by meditative passages and overlaid by some of the protagonists’ tales or reasoning, like voices from the memory of an artificial neural network, rising from this exciting bubble. It’s almost as if Baudelaire had risen again, changed time, place and medium and started a new series of lyrical tableaux. The result would not be the “Tableaux Parisiens” but “Tableaux New Yorkaises” – or “21 x New York”.

Ralph Eue


Nominated for MDR Film Prize

6 Degrees

Documentary Film
Poland
2013
84 minutes
subtitles: 
English

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Anna Wydra, Izabela Łopuch, Tomasz Tokarski
Bartosz Dombrowski
Wojtek Zieliński
Izabela Pająk, Mateusz Romaszkan
Bartosz Dombrowski
Błażej Kafarski
The world is full of secrets. Or did you know the theory that says that every human being on earth is connected to every other human being by six degrees of separation? But why theory? Bartosz Dombrowski puts it to the test and invites the audience on a very special kind of road movie: getting from a randomly chosen female punk musician in Warsaw to a randomly chosen Mexican peasant via a maximum of six contacts. How this works? The musician sends the crew to a punk veteran in London, who sends them to a family therapist in Miami, who knows the campaign manager of a Mexican presidential candidate in Mexico City etc. Every contact reduces the distance to Marco, the Mexican peasant and goal of all efforts. But this story would be no more than an entertaining global treasure hunt if the director did not use the superficial search as an entry point into the various lives and stories of his random protagonists. This level has a surprising effect: we discover ourselves. These people could be living in my town. Their experiences and stories are familiar, since they are based on a universal cultural code that connects us all as brothers and sisters.

Matthias Heeder

A Blue Room

Animated Film
France,
Poland
2014
15 minutes
subtitles: 
English

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Ron Dyens
Tomasz Siwiński
Rémi Boubal
Tomasz Siwiński
Tomasz Siwiński
Tomasz Siwiński
Tomasz Siwiński
Lionel Guenoun
A man is in a coma. In his mind he wakes up in a room where a window is the only link to the world outside. He can’t open it, but he sees persons and events from his life move past outside.

A Diary of a Journey

Documentary Film
Poland
2013
52 minutes
subtitles: 
English

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Anna Gawlita
Piotr Stasik
Motion Trio
Piotr Stasik, Tomasz Wolski
Piotr Stasik, Tomasz Wolski
Tadeusz has devoted his life to photography, especially photo reportages. Now he has grown old and passes on his art to Michal, a highly motivated 15-year-old. They go on a trip together, travelling through Polish villages in their van with the built-in dark chamber, portraying the people they meet. Their black-and-white photos add up to a visual travel diary. Piotr Stasik has found his own poetic way of capturing the work of Tadeusz Rolke, who used to work for “Spiegel” and “Stern”: as a documentary road movie that also seems to be a trip through time. From the start this enterprise radiates an old-fashioned quality. And this is not just about the good old analogue image. When the developed photos are strung across the empty market square on a clothesline, they enable simple encounters that could never happen on Facebook. But it’s the encounter between old and young that’s at the centre here. The master and his pupil form an unconventional team whose roles are occasionally reversed. What Tadeusz missed in life, Michal still has a chance to catch up on. And so this film ultimately tells the story of a journey through life. No lack of big issues here, but the light touch with which they are compiled really makes the difference. While the magic of a summer is superimposed over everything.

Lars Meyer

A Documentary Film

Animadoc
Poland
2015
7 minutes
subtitles: 
English

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Marcin Malatyński
Marcin Podolec
Wiktoria Nowak
Marcin Podolec
Marcin Podolec
Marcin Podolec
Marcin Podolec
Marcin Podolec
What would a documentary about a man from Jarosław look like whose biography records no special events – while the big dramas happen on the television monitor? And yet this is life as lived: work, coffee, headache pills, vacations. A house that’s too big now that the children have moved out. Marcin Podolec in a touching way transfers his father’s life into the world of comics and creates a new genre in the process: the animated long term observation.

Lars Meyer
Retrospective 2016
A Few Stories About a Man Bogdan Dziworski

Even without arms the hero of this film is a passionate skier and high board diver – and a brilliant painter, too.

A Few Stories About a Man

Documentary Film
Poland
1983
20 minutes
subtitles: 
_without dialogue / subtitles

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Wytwórnia Filmów Oświatowych
Bogdan Dziworski
Janusz Hajdun
Krzysztof Ptak
Agnieszka Bojanowska
Bogdan Dziworski
Jan Freda
Even without arms the hero of this film is a passionate skier and high board diver – and a brilliant painter, too. An unfettered camera assists him in overcoming seemingly inhuman obstacles, transforming this portrait of a total optimist into pure cinema magic.
Retrospective 2016
A Story of a Man Who Filled 552% of the Quota Wojciech Wiszniewski

With his shovel-like hands the Silesian miner Bernard Bugdoł became a working class hero and the great white hope of the new socialist Poland of the 1950s.

A Story of a Man Who Filled 552% of the Quota

Documentary Film
Poland
1973
25 minutes
subtitles: 
English

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Telewizja Polska
Wojciech Wiszniewski
Witold Stok, Tomasz Tarasin, Cesary Makowski, Wojciech Kozłowski
Stanisław Pieniak
Janusz Retzer
With his shovel-like hands the Silesian miner Bernard Bugdoł became a working class hero and the great white hope of the new socialist Poland of the 1950s. Two decades later, cinema rebel Wojciech Wiszniewski compares Bugdoł the man and his legend. A tragicomic look behind the myth.

Ab Ovo

Animated Film
Poland
2013
6 minutes
subtitles: 
_without dialogue / subtitles

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Marcin Malatyński
Anita Kwiatkowska-Naqvi
George Antoniv
Anita Kwiatkowska-Naqvi
Anita Kwiatkowska-Naqvi
Anita Kwiatkowska-Naqvi
Anita Kwiatkowska-Naqvi
The film shows a new life waking up and the transformation of a female body which loses its former shape. The physical sensation becomes increasingly more distinct until the moment when the baby leaves the boundaries of the mothers body.

Afternoon

Animated Film
Germany,
Poland
2012
3 minutes
subtitles: 
_without dialogue / subtitles

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Izabela Plucinska
Michal Krajczok
Izabela Plucinska
Izabela Plucinska
Izablea Plucinska
A poetic snapshot of the life of a couple who just live side by side and have ceased to pay attention to each other. An unexpected incident disturbs their routine and brings the couple closer again.
Witold Giersz 2015
Awaiting Witold Giersz

While waiting for the beloved one in a café, a man entertains himself by making gowned ladies and tailcoated men from napkins.

Awaiting

Animated Film
Poland
1962
9 minutes
subtitles: 
_without dialogue / subtitles

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Studio Miniatur Filmowych
Witold Giersz
Zbigniew Rudziński
Jan Tkaczyk
Witold Giersz, Ludwik Perski
Jan Radlicz
While waiting for the beloved one in a café, a man entertains himself by making gowned ladies and tailcoated men from napkins. A ball and a duel take place on the shining table top. The romantic story of life, love and death among the paper characters is full of suspense and dramatic twists.

Annegret Richter

Baths

Animated Film
Poland,
UK
2013
4 minutes
subtitles: 
_without dialogue / subtitles

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Wlodzimierz Matuszewski
Tomasz Ducki
Jean-Marc Petsas
Tomasz Ducki
Tomasz Ducki
Tomasz Ducki
Tomasz Ducki
Two elderly ladies meet in a public swimming pool. Swimming together, they plunge into memories of the old days and past competitions. But there can be only one winner.
Retrospective 2016
Birthplace Paweł Łoziński

Paweł Łoziński follows the Jewish writer Henryk Grynberg as he returns from the U.S. to his native Polish village where his father was killed by his own neighbours.

Birthplace

Documentary Film
Poland
1992
47 minutes
subtitles: 
English

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Studio Filmowe Kronika, National Film School Łódź
Paweł Łoziński
Arthur Reinhart
Katarzyna Maciejko-Kowalczyk
Paweł Łoziński
Joanna Napieralska, Mariusz Kuczyński
Paweł Łoziński follows the Jewish writer Henryk Grynberg as he returns from the U.S. to his native Polish village where his father was killed by his own neighbours. A journey into the past that documents the continued existence of anti-Semitism today and has lost none of its relevance.

Brothers

Documentary Film
Poland
2015
68 minutes
subtitles: 
English

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Małgorzata Staroń
Wojciech Staroń
Wojciech Staroń
Zbigniew Osiński, Wojciech Staroń
Wojciech Staroń
The first sentences are still spoken in Russian. Then the brothers Mieczysław and Alfons find their Polish tongue again. They are back in their native country of Masuria, 70 years after being sent to exile in Siberia. But apart from the language they might as well still be in Siberia or Kazakhstan. The stations of their lives have gradually lost their time and place over the years, as scenes from their own home movies, yellowed traces of memories, suggest.

Director and cinematographer Wojciech Staroń accompanies the brothers on the last stage of their shared life, doles out their minor verbal tiffs and searches for the intimate moments that show wordlessly that they always depended on each other. One brother paints, the other holds the ladder, though it may cost his last ounce of strength. Staroń’s camera unerringly captures the symbolic images that reflect the brothers’ lives together. Two tractors chasing each other on the horizon. Two jetties on a lake, one of them a little more decrepit than the other. Two trees on a snow covered field, the one farther out hardly visible. At the same time he manages to re-translate Alfons’s mystical nature paintings into the present day, in which the brothers face a very real farewell. A poetical look back at a shared life.

Lars Meyer



Golden Dove in the International Competition 2015 and Award winner of the Prize of the Ecomenical Jury 2015