Film Archive


International Competition 2021
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Karol Pałka
Country life as presented by Karol Pałka is not exactly romantic: two women, a ramshackle house, the ground wet, the clothes dirty. An unconventional visit to a wasteland.
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Karol Pałka
International Competition 2021
Documentary Film
70 minutes
German Subtitles for deaf and hard-of-hearing, English

Danusia and Basia are a mother and daughter, sharing a life presented by director Karol Pałka as supremely secluded. Far removed from any comfort, the seasons pass, a priest comes to visit, the women wade through mud and cultivate their habits. But, unnoticed by Danusia, Basia moves on a few back roads of her own that lead in other directions.

The nearest town seems light years away. Danusia and her daughter Basia lead a reclusive life in a ramshackle house in the country. The rooms are decorated with flower arrangements, scattered with devotional objects. Mother and daughter cultivate their connection to the supernatural, either in the shape of a strict Catholicism or as small rituals in nature. In one scene Basia dances around a fire like a witch. She is also the one who repeatedly seeks contact with the outside world. We see her with a mobile phone then, but the person at the other end remains intangible, unable or unwilling to break the spell around the mother-and-daughter team. It is a dense, almost deserted world which Karol Pałka in his debut film renders in gloomy, shadowed images that grow brighter only when spring comes. But even then, the dramatic opening piece “Specially for You” by the Ukrainian band DakhaBrakha still resonates.
Carolin Weidner

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Karol Pałka
Karol Pałka
Karol Pałka
Katarzyna Boniecka
Karolina Mróz, Wojciech Marczewski
National Film Archive – Audiovisual Institute
Piotr Knop, Anna Rok
World Sales
Marcella Jelic
Winner of: Silver Dove (International Competition)