100 FILMS 2015: #001 – IDA

Ida (2013) 

Directed by: Pawel Pawlikowski

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This Polish black and white movie feels like a masterpiece that was made long ago that has just been discovered. It is simultaneously a perfect replication of cinema of the past – everything from German Expressionism to French New Wave to Swedish Stillness are all here and not just in style of in execution as well.

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At times the framing is so extraordinary and the film such a perfect hybridization of of films from the likes of Dryer, Goddard, Bergman, etc. that even though the time period of the film is very specific (World War II Poland, a very happy place) – The film itself gives a very specific PERIOD piece to it while being very crafty about the films visual and structural moorings.

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The film’s pacing even reminds of those wandering road films of Bergman’s and even the great Wings of Desire as the story plods along at what seems like a trod but really picks up into a massively intriguing story that all takes places on one young woman’s trip to become a Nun after finding out she is of Jewish decent in war torn Poland.

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And, look at her! Could there be a more enchanting woman to watch go through this day. Rebecca Lenkiewicz, who plays the titular Ida is just beyond captivating and the definition of doing a lot while doing very little. Or you know, subtlety. Really, if this movie did not have such an incredible plot and story, the beauty of the shots and the actress alone are worth the watch.

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100 Films in 2015: One of my “New Years” goals is to watch ONE HUNDRED films that are NEW to ME in ONE year. It is to continue my exposure to new and explored parts of medium for myself. I plan to chronicle the entire journey here. This is film #1.

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