SPIRAL (Krzysztof Zanussi, 1978)

Mesmerizing and deeply affecting, Polish writer-director Krzysztof Zanussi’s Spirala so closely attends to a single character that it evolves into a spiritual as well as psychological portrait of the young man. Tomasz Piątek, although he hasn’t booked a room, enters a ski resort. He behaves enigmatically, accosting other guests with rude, personal remarks and interrupting […]

A YEAR OF THE QUIET SUN (Krzysztof Zanussi, 1984)

Winner of the top prize at Venice, the Golden Lion of St. Mark, writer-director Krzysztof Zanussi’s Rok spokojnego słońca is magnificent. It is the love story of Emilia (Maja Komorowska, phenomenal) and Norman (Scott Wilson, nearly as wonderful), a World War II Polish refugee and an American soldier who is stationed in Poland as driver […]

PERSONA NON GRATA (Krzysztof Zanussi, 2004)

The end of the Cold War that the U.S. had launched to the detriment of the world after the Second World War has left the world changed in some ways and intact in others. Writer-director Krzysztof Zanussi’s Persona non grata revolves around Wiktor (Zbigniew Zapasiewicz, superb yet again), Poland’s aging Ambassador to Uruguay, where he […]

SUPPLEMENT (Krzysztof Zanussi, 2002)

I have added this entry to my list of the 100 Greatest Films, which you will find elsewhere on this blog. One of the most moving films ever made, Supplement is writer-director Krzysztof Zanussi’s deepening of Life as a Fatal Sexually Transmitted Disease (2000). Recycling the three most important characters, it covers the same period, […]

THE SILENT TOUCH (Krzysztof Zanussi, 1992)

Co-written by Peter Morgan—whose career of late has taken off: The Last King of Scotland (Kevin Macdonald, 2006), The Queen (Stephen Frears, 2006), Frost/Nixon (Ron Howard, 2008), which is based on his play—and Mark Wadlow, Dotkniecie reki, from Poland and the U.K., is an interesting mix of comedy, romance and Holocaust aftermath. Its centerpiece is […]