directed by Andrzej Wajda, biopic, 127 min, eng subtitles
written by Janusz Głowacki
with Robert Więckiewicz, Agnieszka Grochowska, Maria Rosaria Omaggio
SPECIAL OPENING GALA & BENELUX PREMIERE
How was it possible for a single person to change the world so dramatically? It is as much a political as a psychological question. Wajda, intruding into a private, even intimate sphere of Lech Wałęsa - the Polish "Solidarity" Trade Union's leader, attempts to capture a phenomenon of this incredible metamorphosis: from a simple worker into a charismatic leader. Wałęsa's controversial persona, fostering heated discussions that last till this very day, helped millions of people to release the suppressed dreams of freedom, setting the stage for the political transformations beyond anyone's imagination at the time. And yet, Wałęsa's story does not only have this one psychological or local dimension. The life of a simple electrician, at first fighting for his fellow workers' rights, echoed only some remote events until it was Wałęsa himself and millions of his fellow countrywomen and men that made the world news for several crucial years in the 1980s leading to the fall of the Iron Curtain. This historical perspective, combined with a dynamic story of a daily life in the Polish People's Republic, allows the spectator to better understand the phenomenon of this transformation process.
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