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A Year of the Quiet Sun (1984)

Rok spokojnego slonca (original title)
Shortly after WWII an American soldier (Norman) and a Polish refugee (Emilia) fall in deep love. Eventually he will return to USA and both expect that she will soon follow him. Emilia's ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Emilia
...
Norman
Hanna Skarzanka ...
Emilia's Mother
Ewa Dalkowska ...
Stella
Vadim Glowna ...
Herman
...
David (as Daniel Webb)
...
Szary
Tadeusz Bradecki ...
Interpreter
Jerzy Nowak ...
English Doctor
...
Adzio
Halina Slonicka ...
Singer
Wieslaw Michnikowski ...
Priest
Miroslaw Gaweda
Halina Labonarska ...
Nun
Zofia Rysiówna ...
Interpreter
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Storyline

Shortly after WWII an American soldier (Norman) and a Polish refugee (Emilia) fall in deep love. Eventually he will return to USA and both expect that she will soon follow him. Emilia's mother is sick but would recover by available medicine. Somehow the mother but not Emilia knows that there will only be one ticket. Realising that Emilia would never abandon her, the mother secretly throws away the daily doses given her by Emilia - and dies. Somehow Emilia discovers her mother's sacrifice and refuses to benefit from it. She gives the ticket to a female friend and retreats to a cloister, living like the nuns except not wearing their dress and not having given a promise to stay forever. For decades she will apparently live in peace. Then a nun tells her that Norman has died and has bequeathed his fortune to Emilia. The nun suggests that Emilia gives the money to the cloister. But from that moment Emilia's religious devotion flies away. She only thinks of going as speedily as possible to ... Written by Max Scharnberg, Stockholm, Sweden

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Plot Keywords:

nun | money | love | friend | american | See All (86) »

Genres:

Drama | Romance | War

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

25 February 1985 (Poland)  »

Also Known As:

A Year of the Quiet Sun  »

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Included under Roger Ebert's "Great Movies." See more »

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The truck ZIL-157 was produced 12 years later - in 1958. Timing 5:40 See more »

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References Stagecoach (1939) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A deeply moving and superbly acted gem from Krzysztof Zanussi
10 August 2014 | by (Enniscoffey, Ireland) – See all my reviews

Also known by its English-language title 'A Year of the Quiet Sun', this is a poignant and powerful depiction of the tentative and soulful romance that develops between a Polish widow named Emilia and Norman, an American soldier, who is involved in investigating apparent Nazi war-crimes in her small town in the immediate aftermath of World War Two.

Krzysztof Zanussi, though not as well-known internationally as his contemporaries, has crafted a heartbreaking and transcendental romance to rival the very best from Kieslowski and Holland. Directed with restraint and an observational eye, the movie establishes a tangible sense of place and time.

Set in contrast against the squalid grey landscapes, the interior scenes are bathed in gentle elegiac hues that mirror the melancholic warmth of the acting. Slawomir Idziak's cinematography certainly adds a mellow and heartwarming tone to proceedings. The soothing and gently romantic score of Wojciech Kilar lingers softly around the edges and complements perfectly the deftness of Zanussi's direction.

In many ways, the wistful compassion of 'Rok spokojnego slonca' reminded me of Clint Eastwood's 'The Bridges of Madison County'. Both romances are grounded very much in the unavoidable realities of life yet succeed in tenderly conveying the powerful dreams and hopes that deep love can engender.

As much as the technical aspects make this a film of considerable beauty, it was the subtle, heartfelt acting of Maja Komorowska and Scott Wilson that most touched me. The quiet dignity that Komorowska conveys as Emilia cares for her mother and ekes out an existence amidst the rubble proved deeply affecting. One wishes with all one's being that such a selfless and beautiful person as Emilia could find lasting happiness in life. The astonishing performance of the luminous Komorowska brought tears to my eyes. Her playing exhibits quite wonderful sensitivity and a sublime understanding and it is a portrayal I shall treasure being able to witness for as long as I live. 'Rok spokojnego slonca' is a movie of rare emotional depth and beauty and one that deserves to be seen for generations to come by cinema lovers the world over.


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