Director Karol Pałka observed his protagonists over the course of four years. First from afar. It took a long time before he was allowed into the house; before the protagonists were able to trust this stranger with the camera. The result is an intimate portrait of two women who seem to be almost from another era with their mixture of deep religiosity and modesty. With contemplative tenderness, the camera captures scenes of animals being stroked both in front of and inside the house, dedicates time to the Catholic devotional items in the kitchen cupboard and on the sofa table and opens the soul of the viewer to a rhythm of life that is shaped by the cycle of nature and religious conviction. And yet Pałka doesn’t romanticise. The photographer illuminates his protagonists in a manner akin to Dušan Hánák in his documentary film classic "Pictures of the Old World" (ČSSR 1972): employing a mixture of respect, journalistic distance and artistic fascination. Every shot is a still life, brought back to the tumultuous present by a contrasting gothic-pop soundtrack from today’s indie charts: opposites are there to attract, but also to tolerate one another.
Obenkino: original version with English subtitles.
WE WILL FAIL
EC1 ŁÓDŹ — CITY OF CULTURE, NATIONAL FILM ARCHIVE — AUDIOVISUAL INSTITUTE
Karol Pałka - Born in Rabka Zdrój in 1991, Karol is a photographer, documentary film director, and graduate of both the Radio and Television Department of the University of Silesia and the Wajda School. Currently a PhD student at the Jan Matejko Academy of Fine Arts, he is a member of the Association of Polish Art Photographers. His works have received numerous awards and been shown at international competitions and festivals. He received a scholarship from the City of Krakow in 2018 and also from the Minister of Culture and National Heritage in 2020. His debut short Years Have Gone, Winter Is Coming was shown at the Krakow Film Festival and Warsaw Film Festival, as well as at MiradasDoc in Spain. He was also awarded at the Ismailia International Short and Documentary Festival in Egypt. In his documentary work, he focuses primarily on other people – their emotions and spirituality, particularly in people who are excluded, alienated and on the margins of society.
Years Have Gone, Winter Is Coming / 19’/ 2016, prod. The Munk Studio
Loneliness/ 2’/ 2016, prod. Wajda School