Living on the Edge: Shorts Program II
المكان: غرفة عرض برطوس
Total running time: 107 mins. In Polish with English subtitles.
A Few Stories about a Man (Dir. Bogdan Dziworski. 1983, 20 mins. Digital projection) “I live with Henri Cartier-Bresson’s images in my head. I am always interested in a given person’s facial expressions, or in the dirt that you glimpse under his fingernails.”—Bogdan Dziworski. A maverick experimental filmmaker, Dziworski presents a story of an armless renaissance man who dives, skies and draws. Mysterious yet intimate, the short has no dialogue, and instead focuses on the movements and the uncanny strength and abilities of its main protagonist. In turns playful and unsettling, A Few Stories about a Man is one of the most memorable portraits in Polish cinema.
Declaration of Immortality (Dir. Marcin Koszałka. 2010, 31 mins. Digital projection) Piotr “Mad” Korczak is a legendary mountain climber, whose best performance is now behind him. Struggling against age and fear of injury, the defiant sportsman allows Koszałka to film and to interview him, while clearly mistrusting, and resenting, the idea of anyone “immortalizing” him on film. As with Koszałka’s other films, it’s an anti-portrait par excellence, enlisting our empathy in spite of its caustic approach.
Benek Blues (Dir. Katarzyna Maciejko-Kowalczyk. 1999, 56 mins. Digital projection.) An infirm elderly father and his paralyzed son, Ben, spend their entire time inside a tiny apartment looking after and entertaining each other with memories of better days. Ben, a well-known commercial photographer, still receives visits from aspiring young models and actresses, though his status is not what it used to be. Warm, at times politically incorrect, this hybrid is a rare example of a woman working not just in the editing room, as until recently was the case, but also behind the camera.