For his latest, Ida Pawlikoski moves back to his homeland and his mother-tongue: and this film, though lukewarmly received in Poland, has been attracting a great deal of international attention.
Ida is an offering at the altar of simplicity, which follows a novitiate nun - surely the paragon of ‘innocence’. Just as she is to take her vows, Ida uncovers lies and secrets within the make-up of her family’s history, leading back to the Nazi occupation.
This film is not just about faith, but identity - both Poland’s and Ida’s - and the ramifications of history on this fragile sense of selfhood.
Vermeer would have loved the mysterious Agata Trzebuchowska: the lead actress has that rare kind of pallid beauty which, just on the right side of eery, fascinates rather than appeals.
But it is the cinematography that reigns. Shot in black and white, Ida is visually exquisite: the screenshots could fill a gallery. The light is white, hibernal, truly bitter and Pawlikowski conveys the time and place - Warsaw, 1960s - with astonishing success.
At just 80 minutes, Ida may be a slip of a thing, but it’s a polished, beautifully-realised masterpiece that Londoners cannot afford to miss.
|Where||Various Locations | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Leicester Square (underground)|
26 Sep 14 – 26 Oct 14, 12:00 AM
|Website||Click here for more information.|