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Hospital of the Transfiguration (1979)

Szpital Przemienienia (original title)
The film is set in 1943 in a mental asylum in the country. But this is an unusual hospital: there are several incurable schizophrenic cases, staff is bit strange and a writer has ... See full summary »


Edward Zebrowski


Michal Komar, Stanislaw Lem (novel) | 1 more credit »
3 wins. See more awards »




Complete credited cast:
Piotr Dejmek Piotr Dejmek ... Stefan
Jerzy Binczycki ... Engineer Andrzej Nowacki
Henryk Bista ... Dr. Kauters
Ewa Dalkowska ... Dr. Nosilewska
Gustaw Holoubek ... Writer Zygmunt Sekulowski
Zygmunt Hübner ... Dr. Pajaczkowski (as Zygmunt Hubner)
Ryszard Kotys ... Józef
Klaus Piontek Klaus Piontek ... SS Officer Thiesdorf
Wojciech Pszoniak ... Dr. Marglewski
Zbigniew Zapasiewicz ... Dr. Rygier
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Katarzyna Ejmont Katarzyna Ejmont ... Patient
Adam Gessler Adam Gessler ... Patient
Anna Jaraczówna ... Patient
Elzbieta Karkoszka ... Patient
Wladyslaw Kowalski ... Patient


The film is set in 1943 in a mental asylum in the country. But this is an unusual hospital: there are several incurable schizophrenic cases, staff is bit strange and a writer has voluntarily entered the clinic because he is "peculiar" and a drug addict. Then the German Gestapo arrives. The commandant asks for the list of patients, sorts out the "Aryan" doctors from the others on a return trip, and herds everyone into trucks for evacuation to the extermination camps. A young doctor momentarily escapes by covering himself under a pile of laundry in the basement, and then escapes to the woods just as the Nazi soldiers appear. Written by Polish Cinema Database <http://info.fuw.edu.pl/Filmy/>

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Referenced in Kocham kino (1988) See more »

User Reviews

A seminal and powerful movie

This is undoubtedly one of the most profound and brilliant Polish films, directed by the acclaimed filmmaker Edward Zebrowski (1935-2014) and based on a novel by a survivor of the Holocaust, Stanislaw Lem (1921-2006). It is, first of all, a deeply moving and terrifying portrayal of the cruel and absurd world of a mental hospital. Merciless in its depiction of the psychiatric staff and their methods, this much too little known film can be rightly seen as a crushing indictment of authoritarian psychiatry and compared to "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest". The scene where a young doctor openly denounces the methods of his colleagues and questions the very concept of mental illness is strikingly reminiscent of the writings of (among others) Erving Goffman and Thomas Szasz.

Not less importantly, this film - possibly uniquely in the history of world cinema - offers a haunting and blood-curdling vision of the Nazi genocide of psychiatric patients. At the same time, it provides an unrivalled image of the degradation and later extermination of a large part of the Polish intelligentsia by Nazi Germany.

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Polish | German

Release Date:

28 March 1979 (Poland) See more »

Also Known As:

Hospital der Verklärung See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
See full technical specs »

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