A Christmas story. Shame, promises, and secrets in a border town in Poland. Iwonka, who's 15 and blood simple, has a baby, and her mother Halina has promised her recently-dead husband that ... See full summary »
A Christmas story. Shame, promises, and secrets in a border town in Poland. Iwonka, who's 15 and blood simple, has a baby, and her mother Halina has promised her recently-dead husband that she'll learn who the child's father is and have a christening by Christmas. Halina badgers Iwonka who identifies various putative fathers, each of whom proves not to be the one. As we come closer to Iwonka's secret, two men who liked Halina when she was young come to her aid: Wladek, who is her husband's brother, and Matuszek, a somewhat comic former cyclist whose career ended when he ran into a bus. Soldiers are everywhere, as is the cold. Will the baby find a father? Written by
I never heard of this movie or its director until I picked it up; but after watching it, I must say that I loved it. It has a simple story just like in real life, without big drama or confrontations and yet it works out. There is not much suspense involved either; actually, well into the beginning, one gets a hint of where exactly the movie is going.
Real life is - unlike the drama depicted in many movies - pretty mundane. It revolves around routine chores and monotony, and yet certain problems spring up at times that baffle us and leave us disturbed. The main theme of this movie is the search of a mother to locate the father of the child that her daughter gave birth and to christen it before the Christmas, which is fast approaching. Her quest, guided by the ever-changing mind of her immature daughter, takes her to different places at times with devastating consequences. And yet, at the end of the movies, things are settled, sins forgiven and promises kept.
The acting of the actors in the movie is very good and their controlled performance keeps the movie real. Thus, the movie, in spite of having enough scope to be so, never turns into melodrama. The editing is succinct, thus keeping it within just 73 minutes.
My only problem (which in my opinion does not let the movie be a complete 'reality') with the movie is the impeccably clean and apparently expensive clothes worn by the family, who is obviously suffering from hardship.
I recommend this movie.
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