The film evokes a childhood in rural Lithuania between the wars. A country boy, Tomaszek, lives on a rich estate, situated on the Polish border. He realizes that the Issa Valley he lives in... See full summary »

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Magdalena
...
Barbarka
...
Grandmother Misia
...
Helena
...
Grandfather Surkont
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Baltazar
...
Romuald
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Devil Niemczyk
Maciej Mazurkiewicz ...
Tomaszek
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Antonina (as Ewa Kuzyk-Florczak)
Anna Juszkiewicz
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Tomaszek's Mother
...
Bukowska
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Dionizy
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Storyline

The film evokes a childhood in rural Lithuania between the wars. A country boy, Tomaszek, lives on a rich estate, situated on the Polish border. He realizes that the Issa Valley he lives in is to be torn apart by internal political conflicts and unrests among the mixed population of Poles, Lithuanians, Jews and Russians. He, however, is captivated by a paradise surrounding him, the forest, and his fantasies. Written by Polish Cinema Database <http://info.fuw.edu.pl/Filmy/>

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20 September 1982 (Poland)  »

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Issa Valley  »

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Featured in Avant la bataille (1983) See more »

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A dense and elliptical adaptation
6 April 2017 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

There are two ways of making movie adaptations of novels. The most common way is to make a faithful representation of everything that happens in the book. The Issa Valley takes an alternative approach. It is an expressive interpretation of the source material. The key points of the novel are (presumably) there, but nothing is explained and lots of time are taken with beautiful scenes that seem to have little to do with the story. This is a commendable approach but the problem with it is that it leaves little for viewers who are unfamiliar with the source material (like myself.) The story loosely revolves around Thomas, a Polish boy being raised by his grandparents in a country estate in Lithuania sometime after WWI. There is a large cast of characters and the viewers are left to themselves to figure out who they are and how they relate to Thomas and each other. In addition to that, actors will break character to recite poems by the author, and there are even some scenes filmed in 1980's New York City. The film is beautiful to look at, although the print I saw was pretty washed out. I found the film maddeningly vague, but people familiar with the novel will probably enjoy it much more.


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