Dr Marcin Adamczak: The four musketeers stand alone. Regional coproductions between Visegrad Group countries

Linda Beath, the expert and co-productions’ consultant, divides Europe on five distinctive areas, where geographical, cultural and historica proximity influence also profile of film production. Beath argues that in the Central-Eastern Europe region there are still not fully explored possibilities for further and tighter film industries cooperation.
The paper examines those opportunities by analyzing artistic output and box-office performance of selected movies coproduced by Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary. The author analyze obstacles for cooperation, the competition between regional industries. The paper includes market verification of institutional solutions introduced in Scandinavia, which are perceived as ideal model for coproducitons. The result is more realistic view of coproductions which apparently are not the universal solution for Central-Eastern Europe industries weaknesses.

Dr Ewa Ciszewska: Polish-Czech co-productions in 1945-2015

Deliberations on the issue of Polish-Czechoslovakian (and Czech) cooperation in the field of the film I would like to place in the context of changing production conditions, at first appointed by nationalised cinematographies, next – by decentralised Polish and Czech film industries. Renewing diplomatic relations between Poland and Czechoslovakia after the Second World War was accompanied by intensive action being aimed at supporting cooperation of both countries in the field of culture, including cinematography. Hence, the first post-war Polish-Czechoslovakian co-production What Will My Wife Say To This? (1958) by Jaroslav Mach became an arena of clashes of numerous businesses – political, image and artistic. Latter productions – among others, films of Janusz Majewski Zaklęte rewiry, Słona róża, Czarny wąwóz (Enchanted Areas, Salty Rose, Black Glen) – gave an opportunity to “demonstrate” willingness and desire of cooperation, and their specific lack of historical perspective (defined as the detachment from current events) became a chance of avoiding direct pressure being able to affect the final shape of work. The political turn of 1989 appointed new frameworks for cooperation – this time a calculation of profits and a possibility of a box-office success became the main criterion for undertaking cooperation.

Prof. Paul Coates: The names of Repulsion

Unfolding the implications of reading the name of the protagonist of Roman Polański’s Repulsion, Caroline Ledoux, in a ‘transnational’ fashion, as both Polish and French, and drawing on the theoretical contention that works can bear the imprint of unmade, imminent and immanent ones by the same director, this paper argues that Repulsion can be seen as displaying marked similarities with Cul-de-sac. Although Repulsion is often seen – including by Polański himself – as simply a commercial calling-card intended to permit the making of Cul-de-sac, this paper argues that Repulsion contains within itself Cul-de-sac by another name.

Prof. Janina Falkowska: Theory of Affect and the Complexities of History. Reception of Polish Films in view of the affect theory

The focus of my paper is the reception of Polish films abroad, especially the ones with the historical component as its building part. While it seems obvious that the less you know about a particular country, the less you understand of the film and the message it communicates, there are some fascinating rules which govern the processes of understanding or lack of understanding that merit careful scrutiny.
Affect theory is a relatively new film theory which dates more or less since 1995 and which postulates that “affect is synonymous with the forces of encounter” (Seigworth and Gregg, The Affect Theory Reader, 2010) which roughly means that that the human body reacts to a variety of cognitive and affect (emotional) stimuli in processing a message it obtains. “In practice then, affect and cognition are never fully separable – if for no other reason than that the thought is itself a body, embodied.” (ibid 3) In this sense the reception of Polish films like Rose, Walesa the Man of Hope, Ashes and Diamonds, and other, depends not only on a cognitive processing of factual information conveyed by the film but also on a complex negotiation of the spectator’s own meanings generated not only by the knowledge of facts and their interpretations but also the facts pertinent to his/her own social and political background and education and emotional sensitivity. A good example could be a consistent gender oriented interpretation of the films of the British New Wave from 1960s by young spectators in Western countries. These films are generally interpreted as shows of spectacular misogyny, whereby such interpretations mistakenly overtake the historical importance of the movement for both British cinema and world cinema as well. The matters of historical contextualization, the emergence of social revolt preceded by new movements in literature and followed by a revolution in popular culture, especially in popular music, fade into the background. What remains is a strongly biased interpretation which involves only one aspect of the film.
I will use British New Wave as a starting point for the discussion of films with historical content and then concentrate on Wałęsa, The Man of Hope (Andrzej Wajda, 2013) Ashes and Diamonds (Andrzej Wajda, 1957) and Rose (Wojciech Smarzowski, 2011). The majority of my argument will focus on the interpretation of Wałęsa, The Man of Hope, the film which has raised some emotions in Poland while receiving a mild response elsewhere.

Dr Waldemar Frąc: Zanussi’s late artistic works and ideological problems of transnationalism

Zanussi’s creations present descriptively a lot of social-cultural phenomena which create the conglomeration of transnational processes. Reality consists of ideas (Berkeley). It is possible to abstract the thought of consequences of these multidirectional processes in Znaussi’s newest films (not omitting Foreign Body). For characterizing this mental construct it is worthwhile evoking ideas and notions of the philosophy of culture (Vico’s pride of nations, ethnic statehood of Herder, Hegelian meaning of the nationality and negative totalitarian consequences). The meaning of these questions has an expressive shape. According to Bocheński “No outlook on life can be proven to be true but it is always an act of faith”.

Prof. Andrzej Gwóźdź: Our Men on the Both Sides of the Wall

The participation of Polish actors in the productions of East German Defa is generally recognised, though not quite fully described. It is by no means just a matter of co-productions as Kurt Maetzig’s First Spaceship on Venus, 1960 (the first in the series) attests to the talent transfer between Warsaw and Berlin. The deficit of actors in East Germany combined with a good brand of Polish cinema in the GDR resulted in frequent and generous use of the Polish talent to the point that the proverbial “one hundred roles” of Leon Niemczyk in Defa films allows to talk about a kind of the “actor of both nations” phenomenon. Similarly, the presence of Beata Tyszkiewicz and Barbara Brylska in the cinema of the GDR testifies to the fruitful participation of Polish actors in the cinematic productions across the Oder River.
The following paper focuses not so much on the presentation of comprehensive statistics dating back to the aforementioned Maetzig’s film (through films such as Frank Beyer’s Naked Among Wolves, 1963, Konrad Wolf’s Goya, 1971, Egon Günther’s Keys, 1972, and Elective Affinities, 1974, as well as Frank Beyer’s The Turning Point, 1983, contested by the communist regime in Poland), but on the analysis and interpretation of the phenomenon of transitive art of acting between the two national film industries. In this regard the character of a young and beautiful woman engineer was especially remarkable. The role was performed by Krystyna Stypułkowska (a memorable heroine from Andrzej Wajda’s Innocent Sorcerers), who starred in the cult film Trace of Stones (1966) directed by Beyer – a western-like run-of-the-mill propaganda film – shelved by the East German censorship until 1990. Franciszek Pieczka’s art of acting deserves here a special place in hard-hitting Rainer Simon’s Jadup and Boel (1980/1988) considered by some to be the GDR equivalent of Polish Man of Marble, and especially its title role of a travelling puppet theatre owner with a consternation camp experience in Roland Gräf’s Fariaho (1983).
Among others, Franciszek Pieczka also starred in Peter Lilienthal’s David (1979) – the first Western Germany production that won the Golden Bear in the category of feature film at the Berlinale in 1979. Beside Pieczka, West German film industry strengthen the actors who played in Volker Schlöndorff’s films with Jerzy Skolimowski as a journalist in the Middle East (Circle of Deceit, 1981) among. The presentation focused on the transfer of artistic talent should address the phenomenon of the export of actors as a predominantly cultural fact.

Mgr Paulina Haratyk: Polin: Images that travel through the time and the history

“Po-lin” in Hebrew means, “we will live here” and it is an expression that Jews, who settled in Poland during middle ages, were meant to say. Jolanta Dylewska used this phrase as the title of her film Po-lin. Okruchy pamięci (2008), which shows the life in Jewish diasporas in Poland between the first and the second World War. Further the name of the Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw was also inspired by this term. The other crucial thing that the Dylewska’s documentary and the Museum Polin are having in common are amateur films from the 1920s and the 1930s, an unique footage which was shot by polish Jews from the United States, who had visited their relatives in their homeland, Poland. The material – which is now in possession of YIVO Institute for Jewish Research in New York – was used by Péter Forgács in his video installation Letters to Afar (2013), exhibited during the opening of the Museum POLIN.
The idea of the Letters to Afar as well as the Po-lin. Okruchy pamięci was quite similar and aimed to show the everyday life of polish Jews in the II Republic of Poland. Both projects intended to approach the world, which doesn’t exist anymore but also go beyond the discourse of the Holocaust as well as the polish antisemitism.
Nevertheless Dylewska and Forgács used the materials from YIVO in different ways. The Polish documentarist created a coherent, linear narration complemented by the interviews with the contemporary inhabitants of places were those films were shot. The Hungarian artist approached those amateur materials as entireties, which to some extent can speak for themselves.
In my paper I would like to focus on those amateur materials from the YIVO as the examples of films with transnational character. I will also try to show how the reception of those two projects is created by different strategies chosen by both of artists, their perspectives (the Dylewska’s perspective from inside and the Forgács perspective from outside), as well as the artworks’ function.

Prof.Kris Van Heuckelom: The Contemporary Polish Road Film as a Form of (Trans)National Cinema

The past fifteen years have seen an increasing number of Polish films that are set “on the road” and that link up – to a greater or lesser extent – with the tradition of road cinema, either from a thematic or an aesthetic point of view. Indicative of this significant trend are film productions such as Jutro będzie niebo (dir. Jarosław Marszewski, 2001), Południe-północ (dir. Łukasz Karwowski, 2006), Francuski numer (dir. Robert Wichrowski, 2006), Wszystko będzie dobrze (dir. Tomasz Wiszniewski, 2007), Handlarz cudów (dir. Jarosław Szoda & Bolesław Pawica, 2009), Baby są jakieś inne (dir. Marek Koterski, 2011), Piąta pora roku (dir. Jerzy Domaradzki, 2012) and Serce, serduszko (dir. Jan Jakub Kolski, 2014). Speaking in narrative terms, most of these films are rather conventional, in the sense that they focus on the intertwining trajectories of travelers (often outsiders) who – while initially separated from each other by some kind of barrier (sex, generation, social background, ethnicity, …) – decide to hit the road together and eventually undergo some sort of transformation. In my talk, I will focus on this contemporary Polish strain of road cinema as a site of interaction between various “internal” affairs and transnational issues. As I will try to show, these interactions are not limited to narrative and stylistic elements, but also relate to various aspects of film production and distribution.

Dr hab. Jadwiga Hučková: Polish Documentary Filmmakers About the World-Foreign Filmmakers about Poland, Selected Examples

Andrzej Fidyk, Jerzy Śladkowski, Bolesław Sulik, Jarmo Jääskeläinen: They made most of their films within the framework of international co-productions. Therefore, their work would be difficult to enter into the cultural history of one country only. Now widely accepted that the producer is e.g. WDR/ARTE. This brand (co-brand) tells the audience what to expect from the film. Even more difficult it is to assign a culturally creator of the film. Artist who emigrated, moved around, made films abroad and today has a right to feel like a European citizen.
I chose the older generation of documentary filmmakers deliberately (the youngest is Fidyk – born 1953). In their works can be seen clearly – from the Polish perspective – beginning the process of internationalization of production, its positive and negative aspects. I’ll try to answer the question whether the selected films are the result of creative curiosity of the world seen from a distance? Do documentaries of foreign directors bring an original look at the Polish reality?

Dr Sebastian Jagielski, The Transnational Body. Subversions of Elżbieta Czyżewska

The ways to create a star personality in the Polish People’s Republic are closer to the strategy of creating stars in the Soviet cinema, where the star had to „function as an power engine, as an incentive to action” (Oksana Bulgakova), than to the Hollywood system (star system). The fate of Polish stars of the 60s who emigrated to the West demonstrate that the relationship between the stars and the authorities, as in the USSR, matched the traditional patriarchal model. It is well illustrated by the career of Elżbieta Czyżewska that in the second half of the 60s went to New York along with her husband, David Halberstam, who was forced to leave Poland because of allegedly adverse articles about Gomułka. When she returned to play the role of Elżbieta in Wszystko na sprzedaż (Everything for Sale), in the press, she was attacked as a „fugitive” and the wife of a „Jewish imperialist”. I would like to devote particular attention to (1) the phenomenon of a star in the Polish People’s Republic („socialist star system”), (2) transgressions of Czyżewska in the West, (3) and, above all, their Polish reception.

Dr Magdalena Kempna-Pieniężek: The Dark Side of Poland? Neo-noir and Police Crime Drama in Patryk Vega’s Works

Neo-noir is definitely a transcultural phenomenon. Easily adapting to local conditions of various national cinematographies, it found its place among main tendencies of contemporary popular culture. In my presentation I am going to look into one of its Polish examples.
In his films and TV series Patryk Vega combines elements of neo-noir and American police crime dramas. I intend to analyze the specifics of these connections. Is the neo-noir form of police procedural only an inspiration for Vega? Does the director try to adapt Hollywood genre in a specific manner? Or – perhaps – Vega’s oevre should be considered as a form of imitation of some very popular aesthetics? I will try to answer these questions in the context of Vega’s films (PitBull, The Special Force) and TV series (The Instinct, The Dark Side of the City).

Dr hab. Barbara Kita: From Wojciech J. Has to Anne Fontaine. Polish-French co-productions as a cultural question

Film co-productions are usually discussed in the economic and production context because the works resulting from cooperation often lack signs of national and cultural implications which should be the basis of the idea of cooperation.
I suggest to reflect on Polish-French co-productions as a cultural and national phenomenon. I discuss films by famous authors (Has, Wajda, Kawalerowicz, Kieślowski, Polański, Szumowska, Fontaine among others) whose artistic output refers to the aspects connected with cultural myths and stereotypes. In this case cooperation is based on mutual artistic understanding, creative expectations and themes which are common for both parties. Co-production strategies undergo changes being influenced by policy of maintaining identity of European cinema that is connected with legal regulations (EURIMAGES market). However, I hope films still possess the power to “be imprinted” by culture as A. Jackiewicz claimed.

Dr hab. Tomasz Kłys, prof UŁ: Alluring and Cynical. Pola Negri in German Films of Ernst Lubitsch

Pola Negri after leaving Poland in November 1916 and arriving in Berlin was playing in Deutsches Theater in Max Reinhardt’s troupe. There she got acquainted with Ernst Lubitsch whose pictures made her international film star although she played also in films of other directors of German film industry (Georg Jacoby, Eugen Illes, Paul Ludwig Stein, Alfred Halm or Dimitri Buchowetzki). The paper analyzes Pola Negri’s acting in five of seven Lubitsch’s German films with her: Die Augen der Mumie Ma, Carmen, Madame DuBarry, Sumurun, Die Bergkatze. Its thesis is that characters created by Pola Negri, of cynical and alluring seductresses, on one hand refer to the emancipated and libertine heroines played in Lubitsch’s comedies by Ossi Oswalda, on the other – to the international model of romantic lead actresses, created by Asta Nielsen or Italian divas, Francesca Bertini and Lyda Borelli. The perverse subtexts and social libertinism of Lubitsch’s films with Negri correspond with temporary liquidation of censorship in Germany immediately after the World War One, and after its restoration – test its range and their own limits (like in exotic erotic comedy Die Bergkatze).

Dr hab. Iwona Kolasińska-Pasterczyk: Universe “without borders” – the transnational films of Walerian Borowczyk

Walerian Borowczyk will be shown as the type of an artist transgressing boundaries in three dimensions: thematic – through the eroticism associated with transgression of various taboos; the national cinema model – through resignation from the local perspective for the sake of reference to the European cultural heritage and timeless – through universalisation of human experience of sensuality despite stories set in “historical costume”. These variants of “transgressing” will be illustrated based on Borowczyk` s feature films made in the period between 1968 and 1988 ( i.e. from Goto, l`ile d`amour to Ceremonie d` amour). The films made by Borowczyk, a Pole permanently residing in France (1959- 2006), is to be classified as “European” in the meaning of – connoting the world of the Old continent (and not New World oriented). The transnational specificity of his works has its source in their placement within a wider paradigm of European art – literary (from Ovid to Mandiargues), including artists combining erotic and religious discourse, among others, Sade, Lawrence, Bataille and the representatives of 20th century avant-garde) and visual ( through the stylistic reference to the tradition of “female nudes” in the European painting, among others, Moreau, Ingres, Coubert…) and the timeless, universal dimension of erotic tension results from the adopted transhistorical perspective (from Antiquity to World War I, excluding Europe after 1950).

Dr Krzysztof Kopczyński: Polish international co-production of documentaries over the period 2005-2015 – an attempt to capture the correctness

The paper will present the way that underwent Polish documentary filmmakers who decided to act in the international market over the period 2005-2015, i.e. the period of the Polish Film Institute. The author will analyze available data on international co-productions of documentaries and their subsequent distribution. The talk will affect not only the sphere of production, but will also have the ambition to answer the question of the meaning-making in this area specific topics. Which ones and why have proved interesting for the international market? Who and why was already successfully there? Can we talk after ten years since the establishment of the Institute about regularities capable of being used in building a strategy for further action by the institutions supporting the Polish cinema and documentary filmmakers themselves?

Dr Karolina Kosińska: Britons on Poland, Poles as seen by Britons: Polish cinema in British film journals in 50s and 60s

Polish cinema appeared for the first time in the post-war British film journals („Sight and Sound”, „Sequence”) in the mid-fifties. First records about Polish films can be found even earlier (for example notes on The Last Stage by Wanda Jakubowska), but it was Diamond and Ashes directed by Andrzej Wajda that opened British critics to Polish cinematography. Polish documentary „Black Series” was included in the Free Cinema programme and Lindsay Anderson sent his personal note to the editors of Polish „Film” journal. In 1967 Anderson directed in Poland his The Singing Lesson (Raz, dwa, trzy) featuring students from the Warsaw theatre academy. How Polish cinema was presented by Polish journalists (like Bolesław Michałek) contributing their articles to British journals? How British critics perceived this cinema? Were they regarding Poles as their allies in the battle for film? What the review of British film journals can say about Polish cinema in those times?

Dr Anna Krakus: After Forever: Poland and the Eastern Bloc after 1989

This paper asks what has happened to Polish cinema and literature after the fall of socialism. By comparing Polish cinema to the new thriving cinematic cultures of Romania, Russia, the formerly Yugoslavian countries, and with German post-unification cinema the paper argues that in spite of it being more than twenty years after “the end,” artists in Poland have not been able to reach it. Other East European countries have dealt directly with the fall of socialism itself in their cinema making films dedicated to the revolutions of 1989. Films such as Wolfgang Becker’s Goodbye Lenin, or Corneliu Porumboiu’s 12.08 East of Bucharest describe the very moment of the collapse of socialism; other films such as Nikita Mikhalkov’s 12 take place in an obvious aftermath hinting at the recent political changes. By contrast, Polish contemporary filmmakers tend to either produce cinema concerning topics from the communist era or to simply ignore the socialist period films about Poland today. This paper asks asks why Poland, the first country in the Eastern bloc to break free of socialism, is the last one to artistically wrap their head around it.

Prof. Krzysztof Loska: A Migrant’s Image in the films by Katarzyna Klimkiewicz

A methodological starting point is transnationalism as understood by Will Higbee and Song Hwee Lim who claim that the concept does not only refer to co-production or global distribution but also includes political, cultural and social factors that help promote understanding contemporary cinema and the world around us. This is the perspective I would like to assume when analyzing the films by Katarzyna Klimkiewicz who mainly focuses on ethnic minorities and their problems. Klimkiewicz presents the lives of political and economic refugees, raising the issues of multicultural society, racism and discrimination. I concentrate on Klimkiewicz’s short film entitled Hanoi – Warszawa (2009) and her feature debut Flying Blind (2012), made in Great Britain. On the basis of these two examples I would like to prove that contemporary cinema tackles „a migrant issue” in different ways: one refers to the poetics of a documentary and allows the „subaltern Others” speak, while the other makes use of the genre conventions.

prof. Tadeusz Lubelski: Defense against homelessness? Burning Bush – Czech film by a Polish director

After making dozens of films and gaining a strong position in world’s cinema, Agnieszka Holland is still defining herself as homeless. „Her ability to use many film languages does not root her in any of them. None of them is her native film language” – as Elżbieta Ostrowska characterized this status. Nevertheless, the concept of homelessness – in contrast to nomadism – assumes a lack that needs to be filled. Can the making by a Polish director a Czech film Gorejący krzew (Burning Bush, 2013) be read as an attempt to fill this deficiency, as re-rooting? Isn’t the Polish addressee inscribed into this Czech-oriented film as well? Or is it a reflection on the sources of uprooting, directed to the world? The film will be the subject of an analysis in the context of the documentary by Krystyna Krauze and Jacek Petrycki Powrót Agnieszki H. (Return of Agnieszka H., 2013).

Dr hab. Mariola Marczak, prof. UWM w Olsztynie: The Third Polish Cinema as Compared with the New Wave

Modernist Tendencies in the Polish Cinema at the Turn of the Sixties and the Seventies.
The Third Polish Cinema – an artistic group almost forgotten, named and created rather by film critics and reviewers than by the filmmakers themselves, can be perceived as the one which shares certain determinants with the French New Wave’s aesthetics. Regardless of the lack of the majority of characteristics of an artistic school, the filmmakers were tied up with, among other things, the generation bounds and with a willing to vary from the stylistics of former film artists. In the first released films of directors whose debuts took place at the turn of the sixties and the seventies, you can observe modernist tendencies similar to those of rebel-artists of different fields at the turn of the 19th /20th century and in the years of the 20s and 30s. which intended to refresh and even to create a new kind of film language (to transform the film form and establish new rules) in order to adapt it to the task of properly depicting the reality of modernizing Poland of real socialism.

Dr Marcin Maron, UMCS Lublin: Andrzej Wajda’s Danton in the context of European ideals and French disputes about Revolution

Danton directed by Andrzej Wajda is transnational opus because it refers to historic moment – establishment of fundamental politic and social laws of modern Europe, as French Revolution. First of all, Wajda depiected mechanism of revolutionary actions and confronted sense of ideals and social ideas with methods of their embodiment. Ipso facto, he forced to taking under consideration philosophical base of these ideas and their later, political and historical reflections – in France, Poland and, generally speaking, in Europe. Secondly, Wajda considered two, great myths of French Revolution: myth of communistic historiography (A. Soboul) and myth of classical republican historiography (A. Aluard, A. Mathiez). During premiere of Wajda’s film he got into the discussion about French feuds on the subject of „the end of revolution” initialised by inter alia historian F. Furet. Taking the film Danton under consideration it may become subject of supranational negotiation related to democratic roots of modern Europe.

Dr Monika Maszewska-Łupiniak: How a real world became a tale? In reference to Polish-Russian co-production Saving the city

The international film cooperation was an integral part of cultural policy concerning cinematography in Poland in the 1970s. Contacts with the USSR held a special position and their most important area was co-productions. What was an important event was a film directed by Jan Łomnicki Saving the city which was a joint venture of PRF Film Productions, Kadr Production and Mosfilm. Due to the film policy of Polish government at that time, the main theme of the film, a battle of Krakow in 1945, was subjected to the ideological issues which ruled the historic policy at that time. The film by Łomnicki, which had a great negative role in fixing a fake myth of Krakow being freed by victorious Red Army, was first of all to legitimize Polish-Russian friendship and to justify the alliance with the Soviet Union, both in historic and contemporary context.

Prof. Artur Patek: Polish actors-emigrants in postwar British films (to 1989)

After the second world war a lot of Polish actors came to Great Britain. They arrived from political as well as economic reasons. Many Poles have tried to continue their profession in British cinema but only a few have succeeded. The difficulties were tremendous – they had to know very well English and they did not know anyone in British show business. Because of their foreign accent they were often cast in the minor roles (mainly of foreigners from East Europe) and in episodic parts. It significantly limited the range of offers they received. However, few Polish actors gained the recognition in British film and television, e.g. Wladyslaw Sheybal, Izabella Telezynska, Krzysztof Rozycki, Joanna Kanska, Gwidon Borucki.

Prof. Inga Pērkone-Redoviča: Wajda`s Influence on Latvian Cinema. Film Stone and Flinders (1966)

At the turn of the 1950s, during the Thaw, which opened doors for a New Wave of Soviet cinema, the most important subject for the filmmakers from Baltic Republics was national history. Film Ashes and Diamond (Popiół i diament, 1958) by Andrzej Wajda became a model how to talk about history`s most complicated events.
The clearest example in Latvian cinema was film Stone and Flinders (1966, Rolands Kalniņš) – even title was influenced by Wajda… However, after the post-production the title (deemed uncertain and misleading) was changed by officials to Richard, I Remember Everything!.
In my paper I`ll give insight in relations between Polish and Latvian cinema particularly in Soviet time, and will characterize more deeply the example of the film Stone and Flinders – the fate of the film, and the film`s aesthetic and thematic references to Andrzej Wajda.

Dr Grzegorz Piotrowski, Mgr Karol Szymański: Transnational Citizen and Stranger Everywhere? Anna Prucnal’s Film Acting

Anna Prucnal’s film acting was shaped by her professional and private relations to Poland, Germany and France as well as an esthetic background and artistic environment of the consecutive Places of her life. Her career emerged as the phenomenon containing clear local and national elements next to the Other-Above elements that are non-explicable on any other level. In effect Prucnal performs in Fellini’s, Makavejev’s, Deville’s, Wajda’s, Vadim’s or Amalric’s movies as a fascinating and irritating Stranger while at the same time she can cross the Local and be successfully assimilated into international cinema (paradoxically it turned against the actress in 1989 when she attempted to return to her Local – the Polish cinema). Our presentation focuses on describing the means of expression used by Prucnal as well as her characteristic, exaggerated manner of acting. We explore whether it is an experience of Strange Body or the transgressive, dissonant and confusing “added value”. As an effect we aim to define “Prucnal’s acting syndrome” and interpret the elements that shape it (through referencing opera, Felsenstein’s and Brecht’s esthetics, Student Satiric Theater, Avignon’s theatrical avant-garde, counterculture and kamp, leftist commitment). All of these elements are discussed in light of the strategy of the reinterpretation of national cultural signs and the tension between Local, Transnational, and International.

Prof. Łukasz A. Plesnar: Wild West, Wild East: the Conventions of Western Film Genre in Prawo i pięść (The Law and the Fist) and in Wilcze echa (The Wolves’ Echoes)

My aim is to demonstrate that J. Hoffman and E. Skórzewski in Prawo i pięść (1964) as well as A. Ścibor-Rylski in Wilcze echa use the conventions of the Western film genre. It becomes evident, first of all, in the way they construct of the central figures in both movies. These characters, alone and with the guns in their hands, face the gangs of bandits and outlaws like in hundrets of classical American Westerns. We may also easily notice that Prawo i pięść and Wilcze echa resemble the Westerns in consideration of narrative and plot structures, of time relations (“after war” – after the World War II vs after the Civil War), of space (the uninhabited town in Prawo i pięść is somewhat like the Western ghost towns, while the mountain pastures in Bieszczady in Wilcze echa look like uneven prairies of Wyoming or Dakota), and even of iconography. We can see weapon (though the Soviet TTs do the duty for the Colts), the waggons of repatriates (settlers) rolling to the West, horses, and cattle. In addition dress style of characters sometimes resembles the appearances of well-known Western figures: the bright shirt and trousers of Andrzej Kenig recall the strange newcomer (Alan Ladd) in George Stevens’ Shane (1953), while the black vest and gloves of Wijas make us think of his opponent, the gunfighter Jack Wilson (Jack Palance).
My analysis leads me to the conclusion that Wilcze echa strive rather mechanically for the conventions of Western film genre, while Prawo i pięść uses them in a much more creative way introducing various modifications and “local colour”.

Dr Magdalena Podsiadło: Between the East and the West. Neoconservative Character of Postmodernism in Polish Films

At first, the reception of postmodernism in Poland revealed a fear of foreign influence heralding a departure from native roots, an escape from moral obligations, apoliticity, abandonment of tradition, betrayal of traditional values. Nevertheless, during the systemic transformation the special nature of the Polish version of postmodernist art was established, strengthening neoconservative and nostalgic stances. Adapting postmodernism in Polish film is characterised by the lack of tendencies to overcome social taboos, opposing a radical redefinition of the Polish tradition and reluctance to the use of kitsch and bad taste aesthetics. On the base of such films as Déjà vu, Rewers (Reverse), Ucieczka z kina ‚Wolność’ (Escape from the ‚Liberty’ Cinema) and Panie Dulskie, I would like to trace the dominant manifestations of postmodernism in film serving political commitment, aversion to the avant-garde, praise of bourgeois values and searching for genuine spirituality – as the effect of rejecting the leftist tradition, discredited by the communist era. Forming a unique amalgam of western culture influence, native traditions and evidence of the dependence on Poland’s eastern neighbour, the postmodern aesthetics in Polish film becomes a place generating the neoconservative paradigm based on sentiment and nostalgia.

Dr Joanna Rydzewska: Sculpting Stories: The Cinema of Pawel Pawlikowski

Regarded as one of the most important contemporary British directors of the younger generation (along with Meadows, Wheatley, Arnold and Ramsay), Pawlikowski is also one of the most uncompromising in terms of his artistic vision and working methods. His favoured approach to film-making is, as he calls it, ‘sculpting stories’, that is filming from sketchily written scripts and use of on-set improvisations to arrive at a personal vision of the film. While Pawlikowski’s working practices point out to an auteurist approach, his life trajectory of moving from Poland to Great Britain and back to Poland again, brings into focus an interrelated paradigm in Film Studies, that of transnationalism. Pawlikowski’s came to Great Britain from Poland in the 1970s, in the 1990s and early 2000s he made films for the BBC, in 2008 he made a film in France and in 2013 he returned to Poland to make Ida, a film about Polish-Jewish relations, which won him the Oscar for the Best Foreign film. These experiences place him, as he himself admits, in the position of an outsider – a privileged location from which to speak about the notion of identity and belonging. Pawlikowski’s method and stylistic and thematic preoccupations are thus not only a fertile ground to test the limits of auteurist approach, which has considerable and often-mentioned problems, but also of examining the remit of a transnational approach. The following paper will present the cinema of Pawlikowski and his focus on questions of identity.

Dr Sheila Skaff: Ida in America. Aesthetics, Identity and Artfulness in the Anti-Cinema Film

In February, Polish filmmaker Pawel Pawlikowski brilliantly accepted an Oscar in front of a boisterous Hollywood crowd and 36 million television viewers for a ruminative film about silence and contemplation – in his words, an “anti-cinema film.” His film, Ida, is an Ozuesque narrative, set in Poland in 1962 and filmed in seductive black and white, about an 18-year-old novitiate and her hardened aunt who set out to find the graves of their murdered Jewish family members. In the audience at the ceremony were two more filmmakers, whose gentle, gorgeous, quiet documentaries about families suffering through terrible illnesses had been nominated for awards. The evening was the culmination of nearly two years of film festivals and private screenings, reviews and interviews, translations and explanations for each of the filmmakers. It was also a time of public outcry, as Ida, the anti-cinema film, is also an anti-modernity film, which uses symbolism and aesthetic properties rarely seen in Western cinema to denote spiritual identities within debated historical contexts.
In my paper, I compare the reception of Ida to that of several of the contemporary films that have been shown recently in New York City including Walesa: Man of Hope, Aftermath, Warsaw 44, Warsaw Uprising and one of the nominated documentaries, Joanna. I hope to shed light on the reasons that this film was chosen above the others to receive the film world’s highest accolades and how a film that polarized viewers in its native country could draw unprecedented support among film-goers and cultural critics in the United States.

Dr Pavel Skopal: Polish cinema of the late 1950s and early 1960s from the Soviet perspective

Cultural policy in the Soviet bloc countries underwent rather abrupt changes during the first two post-war decades. I will focus mainly on the shifts between 1956 and 1960 in Poland and their effects on cinema culture. Specifically, I will present how the Polish cinema production and distribution was perceived from the perspective of the Soviet ministry of culture and the Soviet party bodies. Initiatives in the sphere of international co-productions, as well as three international conferences organised in 1957, 1958 and 1960 for representatives of the Soviet bloc´s film industries, will be interpreted as an instrument which the Soviet cultural functionaries attempted to use for guiding the national cinema culture in the “proper” direction. The specific position which the Polish cinema had from the Soviet point of view will be contextualized by a brief comparison with the Czechoslovak and East German cases. Both implemented and unrealized Polish co-productions will be discussed as a sphere of cultural transfers, as well as a sphere for testing an effectivity of cultural control.

Dr hab. Iwona Sowińska: Music without borders? Composer Henryk Wars’s activity after the outbreak of World War Two

The basic predisposition of a film composer is the capacity of adapting to changing requirements. However, the variety of challenges, which Henryk Wars had to face during his long and transnational career, was unique.
Before the war Wars was one of the leading figures of Polish show business and a giant of Polish film music. After September 1939, he composed the music for two Soviet films, including anti-Polish Dream by Mikhail Romm. Then, with the army lead by General Anders, Wars headed through the Middle East for Italy, where he collaborated on the patriotic film Wielka droga (The Big Trial, 1946) by Michał Waszyński. Finally, he emigrated to the United States, where – after a few years of looking forward to the first major orders – he eventually achieved some success as a composer of music for westerns, thrillers, family films and television series.
Taking into account examples of Soviet and American Wars’s creative period I consider the influence exerted on composing for film by external contexts to music: politics and ideology, genre formulas and film practice dominant at given time and place.

Dr Imre Szíjártó: Polish Cinema as Cult

Cult is a notion attached to the extratextual existence of films and refers to processes of reception in the widest sense of the word. Cult plays an essential role in defining and redefining semiotic layers, in signification and the operations of cultural memory.
My paper explores how Polish film art – both filmmakers and films – appear in the context of Hungarian cinema. The analysis of the Hungarian reception of Polish cinema renders legible how Hungarian films use and redifine the cultural-cinematic semiotics of Polish reality. My paper, on the one hand, addresses issues related to national imageries, on the other hand, it hopes to transcend the scope of how Hungarian films represent Polishness and explore ways in which Polish perspectives are corporated into the texture of Hungarian culture in general. The most significant aspect of the Hungarian reception are allusions with strong intertexuality. My paper will examplify this while analysing the presence of Ashes and Diamonds in a number of Hungarian films.

Dr hab. Monika Talarczyk-Gubała: I see myself as a part of wider whole. Space in the films by Katarzyna Klimkiewicz in postcolonial perspective

Although Katarzyna Klimkiewicz is at the begining of her film career, she already belongs to the unique group of cosmopolitans among the Polish women filmdirectors. Her artistic and production cooperation and reception of her films have gone beyond the borders of Poland and even Europe. From the school etude Treading water (1999) to the newest medium-length La Isla (2013) she has developed and continues to develope her film projects in cooperation with foreign partners. The production context coincides with creating the film spaces on the borders of divided worlds, which have started to infiltrate due to the migrations of people, what leads to new conflict or, quite the contrary, to the unexpected alliances.  Klimkiewicz has written the new postcolonial experiences in the film genres, as a documentary (Wasserschlacht), a road movie (Hanoi-Warszawa), an erotic thriller (Flying blind) and a historical thriller (project She Hungry). The Author will examine the construction of spaces in the films by Katarzyna Klimkiewicz in different genres, with the assumption that the space is the principal category of the director’s policy and film genres serve as media to reflect upon chances and threats of migrations.

Dr Dominik Wierski: A good style is an unseen style. The collaboration between Sidney Lumet and Andrzej Bartkowiak

Andrzej Bartkowiak, a Polish director of photography, have achieved an unquestionable success in Hollywood. The article is concerned with a very important part of his work – the collaboration with Sidney Lumet thorough the years.
Between 1981 and 1993 they had made 11 films together, dealing with different subjects and working within multiple genres. All of the films have unique, though seemingly hidden “signature” of Bartkowiak as the director of photography. In my opinion the key to its uniqueness are Lumet’s words: “Good style, to me, is unseen style. It is style that is felt”. I will try to use this key in order to define and analyze Bartkowiak’s work with Lumet.
These films are usually seen as standard examples of “neutral style”. However, deeper and more accurate analysis can detect multiplied meanings, present due to the elaborate visual side of the films. Lighting, shots and composition of frames particularise essential themes of Lumet’s films: the image of the protagonist and the image of the city.
The argument will be carried out on the basis of analytical reading of films and Bartkowiak’s own new commentary on selected matters from an interview made by the author of the article.

Mgr Grzegorz Wójcik: Małgorzata Szumowska’s cinema transnationality – phenomena explication attempt

The basic aim of work is to explain the Małgorzata Szumowska’s phenomena, whose feature films in the recent years have enjoyed successes on international movies festivals. In my opinion such phenomena is based not only because of the fact that these are international productions and performing actors come from many European countries. Basing on Will Highby’s idea of critic transnationality, claiming that transnationality in Cinema try to discover the region’s capability, to transform iby this way the global cinematography, I would like to try to show, that Szumowska in her films, as nomad Rosi Braidotti, look form a perspective at present Poland and sat in here happenings to anew go ahead with question of Polishness, however she does it somehow from the external perspective, “playing” by national myths and stereotypes. Also fact of making the film’s protagonists as individuals with nomadic subjectivity, which I have illustrated by Rosi Braidotti conception, influence on transnationality of her cinema.