"Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife". Roman, after discovering his impotence, urges his wife Hanka to take a lover. She reluctantly complies, and Roman, despite his earlier words, ...
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"Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife". Roman, after discovering his impotence, urges his wife Hanka to take a lover. She reluctantly complies, and Roman, despite his earlier words, becomes obsessively jealous. Spying on her, he learns of her affair, and vows to kill himself - not knowing that Hanka was in fact breaking off the relationship... Written by
Michael Brooke <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This is one of the most potent Dekalogs for a while. The setup is one of those brilliant Kieslowski touches of sending us echoes that we're uncertain if from a hazy future or from inside the soul. He had plans to turn this into a third Short Film but gave up after exhaustion.
A husband discovers he's unable to have children, the doctor suggesting divorce, the end of his marriage. This is interlaid with shots of the wife back home looking for him in an empty apartment. There's a desolate sense between the two of them, something lost along the way and no one looked for it to put it back in. They lay on the same bed now, he has shared the news, and suggests she takes up an affair.
But is all of this, as in film noir, a dreamlike urge of pushing her away from him, or deep down wanting to? At the hospital where he works we get the sense that he's fascinated by a young patient who has a lovely voice but her heart might give way if she becomes a singer. She is content to not pursue this love.
So there is something, the Kieslowskian touch as I am discovering with these Dekalogs, of elusively inhabiting something that's been laying in wait and opens chasms in who these characters are. What we see may be what she's thought about before in a marriage that was draining itself away.
But then it slowly drains itself away. It sets itself up for formulaic surprises where now the boyfriend shows up where she went on a trip and he finds out and is heartbroken. We have what's by now a very typical tension in the series. If you have seen previous Dekalogs in a row, like I did, this will be slight by now.
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