KINOTEKA Polish Film Festival celebrates 10 years of Polish cinema

The annual KINOTEKA Polish Film Festival returns for an extra special 10th anniversary programme, bringing together the leading lights of Polish Cinema, 8-22 March 2012.

A selection of cinematic goodies, from the internationally acclaimed titles of the last 12 months including debut filmmakers, new works from illustrious auteurs, award-winning screen performances, and exciting collaborations with visual artists and musical icons.

KINOTEKA will take place at numerous venues across the capital including the Curzon Soho, Riverside Studios, Barbican Centre, Prince Charles Cinema, The National Gallery and Tate Modern as well as special festival programmes in Edinburgh and Belfast.

Highlights from the 10th anniversary themed programme include:

  • Opening Night Gala screening of Malgorzata Szumowska’s Elles, starring Juliette Binoche at Curzon Soho. The award-winning 33 Scenes From Life director’s new film which premiered at Toronto, follows Anne (Juliette Binoche), a wealthy Paris-based mother of two and investigative journalist for Elle, who is writing an article about student prostitution. Her meetings with two fiercely independent young women, are profound and unsettling, moving her to question her most intimate convictions about money, family and sex. Kinoteka’s Opening Night Gala also marks International Women’s Day, a global day celebrating the economic, political and social achievements made by women, past, present & future. Elles will be released by Artificial Eye in cinemas on 20 April.
  • 10 years, 10 directors, 10 films. In celebration of Kinoteka’s 10th ‘Birthday’, 10 world renowned British and Polish leading filmmakers including Andrzej Wajda, Pawel Pawlikowski, Ken Loach and Nicolas Roeg have been invited to chose their personal favourite Polish films; marking 10 milestones of Polish Cinema, spanning fiction features and documentaries.
  • Gala preview screening of In Darkness, the latest film from Agnieszka Holland, (Europa, Europa, HBO’s The Wire & Treme), one of Poland’s most prolific film and television directors, In Darkness tells the incredible true story of Leopald Socha (a phenomenal performance by Robert Wieckiewicz, Poland’s hottest acting talent), a sewer worker and petty thief in Nazi-occupied Poland, whom after stumbling upon a group of Jews in the sewers, agreed to hide them for a price. What starts out as a straightforward business arrangement becomes something unexpected and extraordinary. Based on the book, In The Sewers of Lvov by Robert Marshall, In Darkness has been chosen as Poland’s official submission for Best Foreign Language Film Oscar® 2012. Screening in partnership with the UK Jewish Film Festival, In Darkness will be released by Metrodome in cinemas on 16 March.
  • 10 commandments. Krzysztof Kieslowski’s Dekalog – An exhibition of original poster artwork from the revered Dekalog series international releases.
  • Continuing the festive theme, Second Run DVD will be launching their Special Edition ‘Polish Cinema Classics‘ 4-DVD Box Set – a collection of newly restored Polish classics released for the first time in the UK. In celebration of Kinoteka’s 10th anniversary, the festival will be screening Second Run’s newly restored versions of Andrzej Wajda’s Innocent Sorcerers and Jerzy Kawalerowicz’s Night Train.
  • New Polish Cinema brings together both critically acclaimed and award-winning features and shorts from the last 12 months including, Courage starring Robert Wieckiewicz (Best Actor, Warsaw Film Festival) in a modern-day take on the story of Cain and Abel, exploring the primal themes of sibling rivalry, cowardice, guilt and redemption against the backdrop of contemporary Poland. Fear of Falling, the new film from Oscar nominated Rabbit a la Berlin director, Bartek Konopka, tells the story of a man struggling to come to terms with helping his mentally ill father whilst reconciling their relationship. Leszek Dawid’s feature debut, Ki is a slice of Polish Realist drama, starring Roma Gąsiorowska (Zero, Snow White And Russian Red), as a young single mother living on the breadline, struggling to make ends meet.
  • The Mill & The Cross is a unique digital film tapestry woven together by widely reputed Polish visual artist and writer, Lech Majewski (director of The Garden of Earthly Delights and original author & producer of Basquiat). Based on Peter Bruegel’s painting, The Way to Calvary, and inspired by art historian Michael Francis Gibson’s book of the same name, The Mill &The Cross, places the story of Christ’s Passion in Flanders in 1564, when Bruegel painted his masterpiece. Selecting a dozen characters featured in the canvas, The Mill & The Cross recreates the artwork on film through richly detailed multilayered perspectives, as life stories unfold and entwine. Starring Rutger Hauer as Bruegel and co-starring Charlotte Rampling and Michael York.
  • Kinoteka Closing Night Gala – Krzysztof Penderecki. Making his first Barbican appearance in over 12 years, the iconic avant-garde classical composer, Krzysztof Penderecki returns to the London stage for an outstanding collaboration, featuring music by both Pendericki and Radiohead guitarist and radical innovator Jonny Greenwood. Celebrating the strong influence Penderecki’s music has had on Greenwood’s compositional career, the evening will feature a performance of a new piece composed by Greenwood, 48 Responses to Polymorphia. The concert will be accompanied by a striking contemporary video and lighting set design.

Both Penderecki and Greenwood’s music have been featured in numerous films. Penderecki, most notably in The Shining, The Exorcist and The Children of Men as well as having composed original film scores most recently for Katyn and Shutter Island. Greenwood’s music with Radiohead has featured in many films as well as his own original scores for There Will Be Blood, Norwegian Wood, We Need To Talk About Kevin and Paul Thomas Anderson’s upcoming, The Master. An accompanying album of Penderecki and Greenwood’s music will be released on Nonesuch Records in 2012.

Find the full programme on

KINOTEKA is presented by Polish Cultural Institute in London , DFDS Seaways and Polish Film Institute



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Agnieszka Holland’s “In Darkness” to be released 16 March