19-year-old Tomek whiles away his lonely life by spying on his opposite neighbour Magda through binoculars. She's an artist in her mid-thirties, and appears to have everything - not least a... See full summary »
The young and patriotic student Demachy joins the French army in 1914 to defend his country. But he and his comrades soon experience the terrifying, endless trench war in Champagne, where ... See full summary »
For many years, filmmaker Michel Drach wanted to tell the story of his childhood during WWII and his family's escape from the occupying Nazis. The film explores his bittersweet memories, ... See full summary »
Kiyoshi is a brooding young man who treats women solely as objects. Makoto is a young woman who is just reaching her sexual awakening. She and her friends accept car rides from middle aged ... See full summary »
From 1972 until 1974, Joris Ivens and Marceline Loridan, along with a Chinese film crew, documented the last days of the Cultural Revolution, marking the end of an era. The vast amount of ... See full summary »
Ichikawa's cameras follow the 1964 Summer Olympics from opening to closing ceremonies. Sometimes he focuses on spectators, as athletes pass in a blur; sometimes he isolates a competitor; ... See full summary »
Weronika lives in Poland. Véronique lives in Paris. They don't know each other. Weronika gets a place in a music school, works hard, but collapses and dies on her first performance. At this... See full summary »
Filmed in 1976 and shelved for five years. A young man in his twenties leaves prison after a three-year sentence. He wants to start a new life in a place where he is not known and dreams ... See full summary »
Romek, an idealistc 19-year-old boy, takes a job as a tailor in the costume department of a Warsaw theater company where his new colleague, Sowa, is pressured to make a costume for an ... See full summary »
Although the movie was made in 1981, it had its premiere in 1987. The delay was because of state-imposed censorship due to the film's political content. See more »
Early in life it is a joy. because the light seems so near, so reachable. Finally, it brings bitterness. We can see how it has receded. I have been through much these forty years. I see that the light has receded. But I should not discourage you. You can be sure of one thing. Without that bitterness, that hope... life would be lamentable.
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The recent romantic comedy 'Sliding Doors' postulated what might happen if a character caught, or did not catch, a particular train. But master Polish film maker Krzysztof Kieslowski had had this idea twenty years earlier, and in his film 'Blind Chance', he used it to much more serious purpose: to explore the interplay of chance and character in the fate of a man. At the same time, he painted a picture of Poland in a state of flux (the film was made during the period of martial law, and duly suppressed for five years); and of the way the same moral choices confront everyone, albeit in different forms. The film lacks the high artistry of his subsequent works, but his ability to distill the essence of life into minimalist drama is already much in evidence. The stark awfulness of the communist regime may have aided him in this, as evidenced by the looser, more mystical nature of his final, French-set work. But his greatest achievements, the openly political 'No End' and the perfect morality plays of the 'Dekalog', can each be seen as natural extensions of the themes of 'Blind Chance'.
In the film's final scene, an aircraft takes off, but to us, it appears as if it is sinking into the earth. The world of cinema is poorer without its director and his bleak, poetic visions.
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