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4 user 9 critic

Pornography (2003)

Pornografia (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Romance, War | 17 October 2003 (Poland)
Two intellectuals, a writer and a director, begin to play a mysterious psychological game in a peaceful countryside manor house during the Nazi occupation.

Director:

Jan Jakub Kolski
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11 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Krzysztof Majchrzak ... Fryderyk
Adam Ferency ... Witold
Krzysztof Globisz ... Hipolit / Maria's husband
Grazyna Blecka-Kolska ... Maria / Hipolit's Wife
Grzegorz Damiecki ... Waclaw / Henia's fiance
Jan Frycz ... Siemian / resister
Irena Laskowska ... Amelia / Waclaw's Mother
Sandra Samos ... Henia / Maria and Hipolit's daughter
Anna Baniowska Anna Baniowska ... Weronika / maid
Kazimierz Mazur Kazimierz Mazur ... Karol
Jan Urbanski Jan Urbanski ... Skuziak / Amelia's Killer
Magdalena Rózczka ... Sitting Room Landlady
Henryk Niebudek Henryk Niebudek ... Hans / German Soldier
Dariusz Toczek ... German Soldier
Jerzy Chojnowski Jerzy Chojnowski ... Gustaw
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Storyline

Polish countryside during WWII: Witold, the narrator, is at a gathering of his intellectual artist friends in Warsaw, where he meets Frederick, a mysterious, but charming, stranger. They hit it off, so he invites Frederick along as he goes to visit the home of his friend Hipolit and his wife Maria. Witold and Frederick become obsessed with arranging the coupling of Hipolit's beautiful teenage daughter, Henia, and an equally beautiful young man, Karol, who is working at the farm. But Henia is engaged to Vaclav, who is visiting with his deeply religious mother, Amelia. As the two middle-aged gentlemen scheme, Germans fight with the Polish resistance, led by Siemian, in the woods nearby. Hipolit supports the resistance and his household is thrown into chaos when he is ordered to "liquidate" Siemian to prevent him from talking if he's captured by the Germans. Meanwhile, Frederick's obsession with Veronika, a pretty young maid at the house, masks a dark secret from his past. Written by Josh Ralske

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Genres:

Drama | Romance | War

Certificate:

Not Rated

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

User Reviews

 
Spielberg should sue
9 October 2003 | by MengedegnaSee all my reviews

What on earth could have possessed the NY Film Festival selection committee to inflict this pretentious, boring, derivative, ugly and silly piece of third-rate filmmaking on its audience? Because it's Polish and we haven't had a lot of worthwhile Polish movies since Kieslowski? Has it come to that?

The film takes Witold Gombrowicz's long-winded but intermittently fascinating classic novel and superimposes a gratuitous (and fatuous) Spielbergesque holocaust plot line, to make it all, I guess, more compelling. The effect is glaringly contrived and (as with the far better Spielberg original) offensively trivializing.

In case anyone misses the point, the holocaust plot overlay involves a doomed little girl and, at the dénouement, a shift to a black-and-white background against which is displayed, in color, a talismanic link to her. Sound familiar? Spielberg should sue.

The sad thing is that there is some talent at work here. Though the plot is gratuitously confusing, meandering, and contrived, the use of a country house around which a low-intensity conflict between Germans and Polish partisans swirls obliquely is effective, with the fighting intruding suddenly into and then just as suddenly vanishing from the playing out of the protagonists' humdrum idleness and self-absorption. Grayzna Blecka-Kolska gives a performance that almost transcends the clichés written into her role as the quietly tipsy châtelaine, and the two young people who are the objects of the middle-aged protagonists' dirty-old-man obsessions (Gombrowicz's central plot line, if no longer Kolski's) look as if they might have been far more effectively used in some other movie, one in which they were given something to do beyond standing around and looking beautiful (which they are, it should be said). But on the whole, this is an over-the-top, pretentious dud, the sort of thing that should be seen only by the paid critics who then have a professional obligation and civic duty to spare all the rest of us such an irritating waste of our time.


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Details

Country:

Poland | France

Language:

Polish

Release Date:

17 October 2003 (Poland) See more »

Also Known As:

Pornography See more »

Filming Locations:

Nowa Sucha, Mazowieckie, Poland See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

PLN9,000,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$37,834
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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