Polish master Krzysztof Kieslowski rose to prominence with the release of his THE DECALOGUE in 1989, ten short films inspired by the biblical Ten Commandments and dealing with moral dilemmas in modern Poland. A SHORT FILM ABOUT KILLING is an expanded version of DECALOGUE V: THOU SHALT NOT KILL. The lives of an alienated young man, a middle-aged cab driver, and a newly minted lawyer intersect under grim circumstances in Warsaw, when a senseless, shockingly violent murder takes place and the perpetrator is in turn executed by the state.
Kieslowski is as much a master of creating a bleak, washed-out aura of despair as Wes Anderson is at creating one of candy-colored quirk. Throughout his career, his films have been understood as intense efforts to wrestle with moral and ethical questions- never with easy solutions.
Winner of the Jury Prize at Cannes 1988 and the European Film Award for Best Film that year, the film’s release coincided with a heated nationwide debate about the death penalty and Poland’s official suspension of capital punishment. As in Kieslowski’s DECALOGUE and THREE COLORS trilogy, or perhaps even more so, the discomfort and tension created by his grim subject matter and manipulation of color in KILLING will seep into you, and remain with you.
A SHORT FILM ABOUT KILLING (1987) dir. Krzysztof Kieslowski (86 min.)
Saturday, March 22 at 5:00 PM
40 Brattle Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
General admission: $10
Senior/child (not recommended for children): $7
Multi-feature pass $12/$10
Part of ongoing series: Martin Scorsese Presents: Masterpieces of Polish Cinema