A teenager in People’s Poland and then the most public of public artists, Wajda had to live with Katyn every day. Albeit indifferently staged and poorly written, the movie’s key postwar scene has a boy, applying for art school, refusing to alter his application so as not to conceal his father’s death at Katyn; the twist is that the stern young administrator urging his accommodation to the new reality herself lost a brother at Katyn. Wajda is both characters. Making Katyn allowed him to imagine his father’s murder without telling us what it was like for him to live with it.

The train of communism steaming through
Koch Lorber Films
The train of communism steaming through
Think the news here is bad? Try Poland's!
Koch Lorber Films
Think the news here is bad? Try Poland's!

Katyn was directed by Andrzej Wajda; written by Wajda, Wladyslaw Pasikowski, Przemyslaw Nowakowski and Andrzej Mularczyk, based on a novel by Mularczyk. Available on DVD.

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