Ordinary surrealism: Wojciech Has's retrospective will be shown at “Listapad”

The non-competitive program of the 27th Minsk International Film Festival “Listapad” will feature four iconic films directed by Wojciech Has, the mysterious genius of Polish cinema. The audience will have the opportunity to spend 2 weekends watching 4 restored masterpieces - the jewels of world cinema. Screenings will take place on November 7, 8, 14 and 15 in the small hall of the Pioner cinema.

Wojciech Has was admired by Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola, David Lynch, Luis Buñuel. His films were labeled "cult" and considered the classic of surrealism, avant-garde and Eastern European existentialism. At the same time, Has always played the role of a “director-recluse.” He stuck to the shadows and seemed to be hiding behind the backs of his phenomenally gifted colleagues Andrzej Wajda, Krzysztof Kieslowski, Roman Polanski. He was alien to pathos, and therefore his brilliant masterpieces are devoid of sharp expressive techniques and attractions, trying to reproduce the sense of sleep. He directed love-movies “without love,” populous frescoes “without pipes and drums”, melodramas and horrors as unidentified intellectual charades. He gravitated to deep-focus photography, the decorative arrangement of the image, complex staged camera movements. In his films, he reasoned about alienation and longing without even a drop of boredom and snobbery. Wojciech Has became known not only for his unique style in feature films but also as a director of documentaries and popular science films. In addition, Has for a long time headed one of the most respected in Eastern Europe film school in Lodz. The work of his student Malgorzata Shumovskaya " Never Gonna Snow Again" will be presented in the main feature film competition of the 27th "Listapad".

As part of the retrospective “Weekends with Wojciech Has” four the most significant films in the director's career will be shown: “Farewells”, “The Hour-Glass Sanatorium”, “The Saragossa Manuscript” and “How to Be Loved”.

November, 7. “How to Be Loved” (1963, Poland), 97 min.Как быть любимой

San Francisco IFF (USA) - Awards for Best Film, Best Screenplay, Best Actress (Barbara Krafftówna)

Cannes IFF (France) - film-participant of the Main Competition Program

On her way from Warsaw to Paris actress Felicia recalls the past war. During the years of occupation, she hid a colleague in her room - the actor Victor, who was mistakenly considered an underground fighter and was sentenced to death. Weak and coward, he suffered from the impossibility of satisfy his vanity and pride and show his imaginary courage on stage. After the war they break up, and Victor is accused of treachery...


November, 8. “Farewells” (1958, Poland), 97 min.


Locarno IFF (Switzerland) - FIPRESCI Award (1959)

The characters of the movie are Pavel from a conservative bourgeois family and his beloved Lidka, a paid dance partner. Young people belong to different strata of society and soon they are forced to leave, unable to cope with prejudices. Time passes, the war begins...


November, 14. "The Saragossa Manuscript" (1965, Poland), 183 min.

Рукопись, найденная в Сарагосе

Special Award of the Spanish Screenwriters Association (1972)

The era of the Napoleonic wars. During the siege of Saragossa, a young officer finds a manuscript related to the story of his grandfather, the captain of the Walloon Guard - Alphonse van Vorden. Vorden's amazing adventures in the Sierra Morena mountains are like wandering in a bizarre labyrinth, with spirits hiding at every turn, demons, oriental beauties, living dead, rogues, robbers, saints and warlocks. The masterpiece of world cinema surrealism is based on the cult novel by Jan Potocki.


November, 15. "The Hour-Glass Sanatorium" (1973), 124 min.

Санаторий под клепсидрой

Cannes IFF (France) - Jury Award

Jozef arrives at the sanatorium, where his father is on deathbed. It seems that time has stopped here, and the borderline between dreams and memories is completely indistinguishable. A man wanders through the dilapidated rooms of the sanatorium, through nook and mysterious gardens, where come to life images from his childhood, historical characters, and strangers who look like mechanical dolls that can break after falling. The film is based on the book by Bruno Schulz "Polish Kafka".

Comments from the best connoisseurs of Wojciech Has's work, prepared specially for the retrospective, will help to find the "magic" keys to these movies. Films will be presented by Columbia University professor Annette Insdorf, art critic Marcin Maron, film critic and music critic Jerzy Armata, film expert and literary critic Iwona Grozd.

Festival "Listapad" expresses gratitude to the Adam Mickiewicz Institute (Poland) for participation in the preparation and implementation of the project.

"Listapad" will be held in Minsk from November 6 to 13, 2020 under the slogan "The Magic of the Image". The Listapad Festival is accredited by the International Federation of Film Producers Associations (FIAPF) as a competitive festival of films created in the countries of the former socialist camp: the CIS countries, Central and Southeast Asia, the Baltic countries, Eastern and Central Europe, and Cuba. "Listapad" was organized by the Center for Visual and Performing Arts "ART Corporation". The founders of the MIFF are the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Belarus, the Minsk City Executive Committee.

General partner – “Shchodraya” Mastercard by Belarusbank.

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