Afterimage, Polish with English subtitles
Powidoki is the final film by the great Polish director, Andrzej Wajda, and a story about another great Polish artist, an avant-garde painter and art theoretician, Władysław Strzemiński. The film covers the post-war period of Strzeminski’s life who, in the Stalinist era of social realism and art’s servitude to the collective, dares to believe in artist’s autonomy and abstract art. Despite his fame, communist past, and a war hero status, Strzeminski’s refusal to compromise leads to his persecution, dismissal from his professorial position, and erasure from the museums’ walls. De-credentialed as an artist, he is unable to continue his work. The story of Strzeminski becomes the story of Polish artists, their struggle to maintain artistic integrity and their resistance against intellectual tyranny. It is worth noting that Wajda selects for the film the music of another great Polish artist of this era, a modernist composer, Sir Andrzej Panufnik, who chose a different path and defected from Poland to the United Kingdom frustrated by the very same climate of socialist realism that ruined Strzeminski.
The screenplay is written by Andrzej Mularczyk, a renowned Polish writer and screenwriter and it is titled after one of Strzeminski’s artistic theories.
“Looking at an object, we receive its reflection in our eye. The trace of an object. Because a person can only really see what he is aware of.”
Bogusław Linda, Bronisława Zamachowska, Zofia Wichlacz, Krzysztof Pieczynski
Polish Movies on Netflix and Amazon Prime
Since OKO meets only once a month, here is a list of movies in Polish, with English subtitles, available on Netflix and Amazon Prime. Documentaries are not included. If you are into that genre, there is a ton available! Enjoy!