In 1976, a young woman in Krakow is making her diploma film, looking behind the scenes at the life of a 1950s bricklayer, Birkut, who was briefly a proletariat hero, at how that heroism was... See full summary »
At the turn of the century, Lodz, Poland was a quick-paced manufacturing center for textiles, replete with cutthroat industrialists and unsafe working conditions. Three young friends, a ... See full summary »
A worker becomes a "man of iron" forged by experience, a son comes to terms with his father, a couple fall in love, a reporter searches for courage, and a nation undergoes historic change. ... See full summary »
A young doctor is tired of being sought by women. One night he meets a young girl who all but forces herself into his room where they talk of morals and love. But he loses her when he goes ... See full summary »
Set at the turn of the century, the story concerns a Polish poet living in Cracow who has decided to marry a peasant girl. The wedding is attended by a heterogenous group of people from all... See full summary »
Maciek, a young Resistance fighter, is ordered to kill Szczuka, a Communist district leader, on the last day of World War II. Though killing has been easy for him in the past, Szczuka was a fellow soldier, and Maciek must decide whether to follow his orders.Written by
Kevin Dorner <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The entire film takes place over two days, May 8th and 9th 1945. See more »
Glasses of vodka are set alight which burn for an unnaturally long length of time and with a bigger flame than expected, suggesting a purer fuel was used in the film, such as petrol. Moreover, when the final flame dies (c.41 minutes) no liquid remains in the glass. Only the alcohol content is flammable in any glass of spirit and a residue of water would be left behind with even the very strongest of Polish vodkas. See more »
So often, are you as a blazing torch with flames/ of burning rags falling about you flaming, /you know not if flames bring freedom or death. /Consuming all that you must cherish /if ashes only will be left, and want Chaos and tempest...
...Or will the ashes hold the glory of a starlike diamond... /The Morning Star of everlasting triumph.
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I've seen this movie only twice, stumbling across it the first time in a theater in Skopje, Yugoslavia, and I left the theater almost in shock. I'd never seen such a combination of direction, editing, cinematography, and acting. (That business about Cybulski being "the Polish James Dean" is disregardable nonsense; like saying that Chopin was the Polish John Phillip Souza.) Wajda's other films didn't seem so impressive, but "Ashes and Diamonds" was simply superb. The images linger in the mind, even now, when artiness has become commonplace. The shattered crucifix hanging upside down; the final chase through the drying laundry; and Cybulski on his side, kicking himself around in circles atop a heap of garbage! It wasn't simply thought provoking, it was shocking. I can only remember one other time I felt stunned into silence on leaving a theater, and that was in LA after the first Bergman film I saw, which happened to be "The Seventh Seal." Don't miss it.
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