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Poland, 1960 (MIFF 1963)

Director: Andrzej Wajda

From his fine trilogy on the subject of war and its aftermath, Andrzej Wajda turns to the gentler subject of young intellectuals in Warsaw. The innocent sorcerers of the film's title are a young doctor, Andrzej, a jazz drummer in his spare time, with a reputation for being a gay dog, and a young girl, Magda, whom he picks up while trying to escape the attentions of another girl. Andrzej takes Magda, who has missed her last train home, back to his flat - the classic seduction situation. Too classic for them in fact, for instead of yielding to their instincts, they set out to deliberately mock them. Each tries to outdo the other in blase sophistication. The airy love game turns into a strip poker, culminating in a complex moment of guilt and shame, when the soul stands naked instead of the body. Magda finally falls asleep and Andrzej is called away; when he returns she has gone. After a fruitless search, he returns a second time to find her waiting for him.

This is, denouement apart, a model piece of intimate film-making, constructed with exciting economy. Scornful of sentimentality, it touches the understanding again and again; Wajda has rendered down his material to the point where its impact is purest, utterly direct. He is helped in this by his two impeccable leading players; but the film is ultimately ours, and all we need do is watch the spontaneous feelings of innocence on the one hand, questioning maturity on the other. Award: Diploma of Merit, Edinburgh Festival.

See also...


Poland, 2007
A monument to one of the darkest secrets of the Soviet era. ... For filmmaker Andrzej Wajda, painful events from his own past have been resurrected in Katyn. The film dramatises one of the last major… More »


Poland, 2008
“A small gemstone that glistens in the memory long after the lights come up.” - Hollywood Reporter ... The story of a middle-aged woman finding sexual reawakening with a young man after losing he… More »


Poland, 1968
The boy in dark glasses who was hero of Andrzej WajtIa`s film. Ashes and Difttrtottrls, was played by Zbigniew Cybulski. The actor and the part he created became a legend, not unlike that of James De… More »


Poland, 1956
On the first of August 1944 the city of Warsaw rose against the Nazi occupiers. Through long incredible weeks the) continued the struggle until they were defeated and the city was destroyed by the Na… More »


Yugoslavia, 1962
Andrzej Wajda, famed Polish director of the trilogy, A Generation, Kanal and Ashes and Diamonds, was engaged by Avala Films of Belgrade to adapt for the screen the story "Lady Macbeth of Mtensk" by t… More »

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