Cold war

Cold war

DVD - 2019 | Polish
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A sweeping, delirious romance begins in the Polish countryside, where Wiktor, a musician on a state-sponsored mission to collect folk songs, discovers a captivating young singer named Zula. Over the next fifteen years, their turbulent relationship will play out in stolen moments between two worlds: the jazz clubs of decadent, bohemian Paris, to which he defects, and the corrupt, repressive Communist Bloc, where she remains, universes bridged by their passion for music and for each other.

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Ron@Ottawa
Jan 24, 2021

First off, the title Cold War suggests a political drama but this is basically a love story, despite the fact the backdrop is Poland under communist rule back some 70 years ago. The B/W camera is good, so is acting by the two lead actors, and directing. I would have liked this film more had it not been for the character of Zula in the leading role, as portrayed in the story. I am of the impression she did not know what she wanted out of life, and out of her several relationships. And the straw that broke the camel's back for me is her resolution to leave her young son, forever, to pursue her 'love' without the slightest of hesitation toward the end of the film. For this reason I simply cannot sympathize with her for her plight. A love relationship between two people can often by convoluted, and when the lovers are both artists this convolution can be more pronounced. I get that. Overall I have to say I enjoy watching this art-house piece, but am disappointed one of the main leads is not closer to a normal human being.

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Basile01
Sep 01, 2020

Ce film est un véritable bijou à découvrir. Il s'agit d'une romance impossible entre deux êtres qui sont inséparables même si la vie les sépare. Superbe chimie entre les deux principaux acteurs, excellente photo noir et blanc et réalisation hors pair.

b
brandongregg
Aug 05, 2020

A very interesting film that makes one contemplate the meaning of our existence. Full of hope, yet brimming with sadness. We are all the architects of our happiness; and, sometimes we are also the destroyers of our dream. Beautiful black and white.

l
lukasevansherman
Mar 28, 2020

Some very confusing comments here. There's nothing to "get" about this film. Yes, it's foreign and in black and white, but there's nothing particularly difficult about it for a viewer, unless you've never seen a foreign film before. And why is arty or "artsy" always pejorative? You wouldn't criticize a football match for being too "sporty," would you? Small-minded people.
Anyway, this 2018 Polish film, which was nominated for best foreign language film, is a deliriously romantic (and kinda tragic) love story that is also bracingly unsentimental. Two musicians in the 1950s meet at a music school and commence a passionate, tumultuous affair that spans cities and decades, all set against the backdrop of, you guessed it, the Cold War. The two leads are excellent, esp. Joanna Kulig, there's a lot of good, wide-ranging music, and the black and white looks great. Director Pawel Pawlikowski was inspired by his parents' story. I'd also recommend his earlier film, "Ida."

a
anonymouswe
Mar 03, 2020

If you like 90 minute films where 40 minutes of it are story, and the other 50 minutes are shots of people doing things completely irrelevant to the film (kids playing soccer, a character spending a full minute walking across a plaza, a full minute of people (strangers, no one relevant to the film) getting off a train and so forth), then this is your kind of film. I, on the other hand, am really bored by those types of film. Add that they did this film in black and white just because they wanted it to feel "artsy," and I wish I had my 90 minutes back. I think this would have made an excellent 30 minute short film. Unfortunately, the producers and director decided they wanted an over 90 minute film instead. A two minute sequence of the couple sitting on a boat going down the river, complete with shots of buildings along the shore lit up at night with the spot light from the film the circle of which shows the only thing lit up in the shot, LOL. Just horrible production for something they went so far out of their way to overproduce in an "artsy" manner. Just dreadful in my opinion. I can only give it two out of three stars. (like I said, there is 30 minutes of a great short film in here.)

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Nursebob
Feb 12, 2020

Pawel Pawlikowski reduces East-West tensions following WWII to a rambling tale of "l’amour fou" and the results are less than staggering. Following the hot and cold love affair between lovestruck pianist Viktor and cavalier chanteuse Zula from their first meeting in 1949 to a final goodbye in 1964, we see their obsessive, often destructive, relationship reflected in Poland’s own struggle with national identity and the dictates of Moscow. But there is no passion, no onscreen empathy, and instead we are left with two clueless people repeatedly sabotaging their lives for no reason we can readily identify with. Perhaps those who actually lived through that era of deprivation and propaganda might see a different movie? Could the two lovers represent something much larger and much "colder"? Sumptuously filmed however in rich shades of black and white with a glorious score that ranges from rousing folk chorales to backstreet jazz.

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graybear3
Feb 02, 2020

We must be a couple of those people who didn't "get" this one. It was watchable, but not what we were expecting as an Oscar nom for Best Foreign Language Film. We get that it was an impossible love story in an impossible time. We "get" the ending, etc, etc. We just don't think it deserved the hype.
We saw all the movies in the "Best Foreign...Film" category. The one we felt deserved the win is "Capernaum". We'd recommend that way over this one.

u
uncommonreader
Jan 28, 2020

Interesting and affecting.

You either get it or you don't. If you don't, maybe it is you and not the actual film. That's okay but don't slag one of the top 3 or 4 foreign films of 2019 just because you don't get it.

It's important to know that films like this don't hand you everything on a silver platter. You have to work for it a bit. And when you do, it is a great thing to experience. Fully digested pablum is out there for you if you really need it, like some reviewers here. Please feel free to watch the 90% of films being made out there that could not be more obvious, simplistic, over the top and probably match your finely tuned intellect best. Oh, and use an aspect ratio that satisfies your equally finely tuned sensibilities. Please...whatever.

Black and white film with pre-wide screen box display, probably intended to mimic actual film production from that period (late 40's/50's). Waited the full 1 1/2 hours for something interesting to happen. It never did. Horrible 'acting,' couldn't understand either lead's motivation. Nothing much to the plot. Very much a "huh?" finale. Redemptive qualities are the music and some interesting camera work/framing.

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