When protests broke out in Communist Poland in late 1970, a crisis team gathered in Warsaw. Soon after the militia made use of their batons. Shots were fired. Through archival recordings and animations, viewers are able to observe various power mechanisms. The film “1970” is a story about a rebellion but told from the perspective of the oppressors.
An artistic commune is working on a film about Rosa Luxemburg, but the mysterious Director disappears as they set out to start filming.
Although the crew are fascinated by the Director, they also loathe him. The question is – where has he gone and who really is the man, who has so strongly influenced the life of this community?
The dynamics of relationships between people living in an artistic and emotional symbiosis turns out to be equally explosive and toxic. The film was inspired by an artistic group led by Rainer Werner Fassbinder.
Krystian Lupa – a controversial and probably the most outstanding living Polish theater director of internationally recognized plays. His accolades include the Europe Theater Prize, the Nestroy-Theaterpreis, he has also been awarded with the French Order of Arts and Letters.
“Let’s try to jump into the well” is a road movie that has only one location – the stage. Whether it presents a road to failure or success is irrelevant. The audience can watch the rehearsals for Kafka’s “The Trial”. They can observe the creative process – often ambiguous, sometimes incomprehensible. A process we have to judge for ourselves.
Lupa invites his actors to jump with him “into a well”, at the bottom of which no revelation awaits.
Controlled conversations, recording with hidden cameras, dirty records of interrogations and recruitment attempts – all of these materials are employed to portray the monitored life in Poland under communism. Sometimes grotesque, this picture is underpinned by horror, escalating intuitively with every minute. Before us, there is a terrifying communist panopticon which keeps spying on and recording itself.
Poland, 1982, the politically heated days of communist martial law. Two coal miner brothers react differently to the oppressive police state. While Tadek (Tomasz Schuchardt) prefers to retreat into neutrality, Janek (Stanisław Linowski) chooses active engagement in the democratic underground. When Janek asks Tadek to store some anti-government leaflets on the second anniversary of Solidarity’s 1980 strikes, he triggers a spiral of events that will have everyone’s allegiences and characters severely tested.
The residents of a village near Opole are celebrating Easter Sunday. People as well as horses have gathered near the church. It is a traditional component of Easter celebrations, which include prayers, a horse ride around the households nearby and fervent singing under the influence of alcohol. Enigmatic editing and black and white photographs reflect the dignified atmosphere of the holiday in which the sacred is combined with the profane in a bizarre chase. All this happens under the patronage of the figurine of Resurrected Christ. The holiday of Krzyżoki and its celebrations make a typical southern Polish tradition.
Piotr and Julia for months have been planning their holiday. They have even made sure that their only protégé – a turtle – could travel with them safely. Unfortunately their plans are ruined by Piotr’s mother: she wants Piotr to bring home his father, a refugee, who has been staying for months at one of the camps in Greece. Despite his strong doubts Piotr agrees to take the challenge. And so instead of an all-inclusive holiday, the married couple starts in a tiring journey to the South, during which they will have to answer some fundamental questions …
Dawid watches a new neighbour move to a house next door. The girl is wearing a Hawaiian hula skirt. Most probably, he also learns why Monika’s grandma has gone away to Hawaii. Most probably, he’s going to tell her that his sister is a cat now. For sure, the boy and the girl will be brought closer together by their strength in order to save their memories about the loved ones who departed this life. The mad Time Hopper will help them cross the gate in an old clock that leads to a place where time rules are completely different.
A group of young men gives up on their existing lives and enters the Dominican Novitiate. Novices learn their duties, but more importantly, they form new friendships. They start to open up and confess to each other. They share their doubts about their faith in God and wonder whether the convent is the way they should follow. They miss their families and friends. They miss sexual contacts.
„The Novice” is a story about the search for life’s purpose. It is also a story about giving up on a path that seemed to be leading to it.