“Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.” —Exodus 20:16, King James Version The eighth commandment of the Roman Catholic faith (the ninth in the Protestant) is largely interpreted as “Thou shalt not lie,” but for Kieślowski and Piesiewicz, this commandment creates a moral conundrum that places the subjects, Zofia (Maria Koscialkowska) and Elzbieta (Teresa Marczewska) in an ethical hell. This hell plays out in Zofia’s classroom, where she welcomes Elzbieta — a scholar from New York — to sit in on one of her classes. Zofia is a renowned Polish professor of ethics and Elzbieta has translated her … Continue reading DEKALOG 8


“Thou shalt not steal.” —Exodus 20:15, King James Version “Can you steal something that belongs to you?” — Majka Coming off of an impressive one-two punch with Dekalog Five and Dekalog Six, Dekalog Seven is a surprising — but somewhat understandable — misstep. The story revolves around Majka (Maja Barelkowska), a 20-year-old who has grown to resent her mother, Ewa (Anna Polony), for convincing her to give up her daughter, Ania (Katarzyna Piwowarczyk). When Majka was 16, she engaged in a sexual relationship with Wojtek (Boguslaw Linda), her secondary school teacher, and got pregnant. To avoid a scandal, Wojtek agreed to resign … Continue reading DEKALOG 7


Mid-level executive and middle-aged man, Stefan Bednarz (Franciszek Pieczka), is placed in charge of building a new chemical plant in his hometown of Olechów, Poland. The only problem, the people of Olechów don’t want the plant. There is a perfectly suitable wasteland nearby that would accommodate a chemical plant, but since a competing company owns that plot of land, Bednarz’s company will have to level a strip of forestland — the trees have been growing here for over 200 years — to build their plant. Bednarz is an honest man, one who believes in the Party and that this plant … Continue reading THE SCAR

Born On This Day – June 27, 1941

“It’s a well-known theory that film has twenty-four frames to the second, and that a film is always the same; but that’s not true. Even though the reel might be exactly the same, the film’s entirely different when it’s shown in a huge cinema, to an audience of a thousand, where a certain tension and atmosphere are created in perfect conditions, on a perfect screen, and with perfect sound. It’s a completely different film when shown in a small, smelly cinema in the suburbs, to an audience of four, one of whom might be snoring. It’s a different film. It’s … Continue reading Born On This Day – June 27, 1941

In Their Words – Thursday, June 27, 2013

“I always said that I never wanted to be anybody’s assistant but if, for example, Ken Loach were to ask me, then I’d willingly make him coffee. I saw Kes at film school and I knew then that I’d willingly make coffee for him. I didn’t want to be an assistant or anything like that — I’d just make coffee so I could see how he does it all. The same applied to Orson Welles, or Fellini, and sometimes Bergman.” –Krzysztof Kieślowski Continue reading In Their Words – Thursday, June 27, 2013

In Their Words – Friday, November 23, 2012

“I think that a film really only comes into existence in the cutting-room. To shoot is only to collect material, create possibilities. I try to go about it in such a way as to ensure myself as much freedom to maneuver as possible. Of course, editing means sticking two pieces of film together and, on this level, there are a number of principles and rules which you have to follow and sometimes break. But there’s another level to editing and it’s the most interesting one. That is the level of constructing a film. It’s a game with the audience, a … Continue reading In Their Words – Friday, November 23, 2012

In Their Words – Sunday, November 11, 2012

“A picture must not be the work only of an author or of actors and technicians; it must be also the work of the audience. The audience makes the picture, as well as the authors; and it seems to be strange because you could ask me how the audience can make a picture which is already shot, done, printed. Well, a picture is different with every type of audience, and if you have a good audience, the picture is better. It is a mystery, but we are surrounded by mysteries… I have nothing against that. I believe in it.” -Krzysztof … Continue reading In Their Words – Sunday, November 11, 2012

In Their Words – Thursday, October 18, 2012

“My part of the work is to make the film. Your part is to find something in the film, or perhaps not. For me it’s always important to hear viewers’ interpretations. They turn out to be very different to my intentions. I don’t hide my intentions. I speak about them – but not about my interpretations.” -Krzysztof Kieślowski Continue reading In Their Words – Thursday, October 18, 2012