IMDb > Man of Marble (1977)

Man of Marble (1977) More at IMDbPro »Czlowiek z marmuru (original title)


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Release Date:
25 February 1977 (Poland) See more »
In 1976, a young woman in Krakow is making her diploma film, looking behind the scenes at the life of a 1950s bricklayer... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
4 wins See more »
User Reviews:
What ever happened to Mateusz Birkut? See more (11 total) »


  (in credits order)
Jerzy Radziwilowicz ... Mateusz Birkut / Maciek Tomczyk

Krystyna Janda ... Agnieszka
Tadeusz Lomnicki ... Jerzy Burski
Jacek Lomnicki ... Young Burski
Michal Tarkowski ... Wincenty Witek
Piotr Cieslak ... Michalak
Wieslaw Wójcik ... Jodla
Krystyna Zachwatowicz ... Hanka
Magda Teresa Wójcik ... Editor
Boguslaw Sobczuk ... TV Producer
Leonard Zajaczkowski ... Leonard Zajaczkowski, Cameraman
Jacek Domanski ... Soundman
Irena Laskowska ... Museum Employee
Zdzislaw Kozien ... Agnieszka's Father
Wieslaw Drzewicz ... Hanka's Husband
Kazimierz Kaczor ... Colonel
Ewa Zietek ... Secretary
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Elzbieta Borkowska ... Casting Attendant
Mieczyslaw Grabka ... Reader (voice)
Andrzej Graziewicz ... Judge
Edmund Karwanski ... Prosecutor
Stefania Kornacka (as S. Kornacka)
Henryk Lapinski ... Pawlusiak
Jerzy Moniak ... Engineer Moniak
Irena Oberska
Zbigniew Ploszaj ... Operator
Maciej Rayzacher ... Chairman
Juliusz Roland ... Defendant
Andrzej Seweryn ... Reader (voice)
Grzegorz Skurski ... Driver
Dorota Stalinska ... Journalist
Mariusz Swigon ... Building Technician
Zdzislaw Szymborski ... Official
Krystyna Wolanska ... Caretaker
Andrzej Wykretowicz ... Architect
Feliks Falk ... Awarded Filmmaker (uncredited)
Stanislaw Frackowiak ... Party Official (uncredited)
Krzysztof Kiersznowski ... Official (uncredited)
Jaroslaw Kopaczewski ... Worker (uncredited)
Stanislaw Michalik ... Judge (uncredited)

Directed by
Andrzej Wajda 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Aleksander Scibor-Rylski 

Produced by
Andrzej Wajda .... producer
Original Music by
Andrzej Korzynski 
Cinematography by
Edward Klosinski 
Film Editing by
Halina Prugar-Ketling 
Production Design by
Wojciech Majda 
Allan Starski 
Set Decoration by
Maria Osiecka-Kuminek 
Costume Design by
Lidia Rzeszewska 
Wieslawa Starska  (as Wieslawa Konopelska)
Makeup Department
Anna Adamek .... makeup artist
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Agnieszka Holland .... first assistant director
Witold Holtz .... second unit director
Sound Department
Piotr Zawadzki .... sound

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Czlowiek z marmuru" - Poland (original title)
See more »
165 min | USA:160 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Movie Connections:
Referenced in The Lesson of Polish Cinema (2002)See more »


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6 out of 6 people found the following review useful.
What ever happened to Mateusz Birkut?, 6 March 2011
Author: Rodrigo Amaro ( from São Paulo, Brazil

"Czlowiek z marmuru" ("Man of Marble") goes to tells us the story of a filmmaker (Krystyna Janda) who wants to make as a film thesis a documentary about one of the heroes of Poland's communist regime, a simple man named Mateusz Birkut (Jerzy Radziwilowicz), a bricklayer that was famous for building housing for all the people, and that made him a cult figure in his country. She is trying to find Birkut, a popular figure that vanished without any explanation and she'll try to discover what happened with this mythic figure. Interviewing those who knew him and watching old footage of him, the filmmaker will make a great work about this man but her bosses who owns the funds (the Socialist government funds) for the film's realization are not very happy with her film, thinking that this might be a damaging project for them.

If the story sounds a little like "Citizen Kane" well, be ready for countless flashbacks, back and forth in the past of Birkut, and a almost inconclusive ending just like Welles masterpiece. But wait! The ending of this journey appears in "Man of Iron" (1981), also directed by the great Andrzej Wajda.

"Man of Marble" (term that refers to the propagandistic marble statues made in Birkut's image) is a powerful and brilliant story about the importance of past in the lives of everyone, it's the thing that makes us look for the future with better eyes, and in the film, we are constantly dragged down to it in order to get some answers about Birkut's future: Is he alive? Is he dead? Why he disappeared? Not just that, it is a great accomplish in showing how documentaries are made, both the protagonist work but the ones made up by the government, where Birkut and his friends were "trained" to appear important in front of camera. And, of course, a political and historical background that reveals many things about Poland and how strict the society were back in the 1950's and even in the 1970's with an absolute control on everything filmed, said and all.

Unique in many senses, "Man of Marble" present us the sad reality of Communism with masked realities where everything presented as good but in the surface it wasn't all good, and Birkut realizes that after an painful incident and after the suspicion that his friend was a spy, something that he never agreed, and that made him fight with the ones who put him on a good position among people, the government.

It is a well made film, with terrific performances by the cast, and a magnificent screenplay that knows how to evoke many times, many periods of Poland without being confusing (something that was problematic in its sequel), everything works fine. Bravo, Mr. Wajda. 10/10

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