“These films have the very real ability to dramatize their ideas rather than just talking about them … they do this with such dazzling skill, you never see the ideas coming and don’t realize until much later how profoundly they have reached your heart.” – Stanley Kubrick
Ten Films. Ten Commandments. One Towering Masterpiece. Unavailable for more than a decade and beautifully restored by Janus Film, this masterwork by Krzysztof Kieślowski is one of the monumental achievements of European cinema and one of the first truly great works of long-form television.
“The best ten hours you will ever spend at the movies.” – David Ehrlich, Indiewire
Active in his native Poland since the late 1960s, Kieślowski rocketed to worldwide acclaim in the early 1990s with a quartet of strangely metaphysical films that became major arthouse hits: The Double Life of Véronique (1991), and the “Tricolour Trilogy” of Blue (1993), White (1993) and Red (1994). It was Dekalog, however, that first secured Kieślowski’s status as a film artist of international importance; and, in his moral and spiritual concerns, his exploration of the mysterious forces that shape our lives, as a true successor to the mantle of Robert Bresson, Ingmar Bergman, and Andrei Tarkovsky. Originally made for Polish television, Dekalog focuses on the residents of a housing complex in late-Communist Poland, whose lives become subtly intertwined as they face emotional dilemmas that are at once deeply personal and universally human. Its ten hour-long films, drawing from the Ten Commandments for thematic inspiration and an overarching structure, grapple deftly with complex moral and existential questions concerning life, death, love, hate, truth, and the passage of time. Shot by nine different cinematographers, with stirring music by Zbigniew Preisner and compelling performances from established and unknown actors alike, Dekalog stunningly explores the unknowable forces that shape our lives.
Each Thursday night in October (and Thursday, November 3rd), two episodes of Dekalog will be combined into a single two-hour program. Regular admission prices apply for each program.