- Elf 2017
Dariusz Pietrykowski, Andrzej Polec, Mirella Zaradkiewicz for Film It
directed by Bartosz M. Kowalski
starring Michalina Swistun, Nicolas Przygoda, Przemyslaw Balinski, Patryk Swiderski, Pawel Brandys, Anita Jancia, Pawel Karolak, Malgorzata Olczyk, Bartlomiej Milczarek, Mikolaj Zamorski, Karolina Czajka, Marta Grabysz, Joanna Kurek, Adam Rosolek, Pawel Krawczyk, Lena Gruszka, Sergiusz Smela, Amelia Slawik, Andzelika Pankowska, Oliwer Kozlowski, Patryk Wojdylo
written by Bartosz M. Kowalski, Stanislaw Warwas, music by Kristian Eidnes Andersen
Available on DVD !
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It's the last day of school and 12 year old Gabrysia (Michalina
Swistun) wants to tell her classmate Szymek (Nicolas Przygoda) that she
loves him - but obviously has little idea how to do so, so she asks a
classmate for advice ... but unfortunately that advice makes her seem only
all the clumsier ...
Gabrysia comes from a happy middle class family while Szymek isn't
nearly as lucky, as most of his day consists of taking care of his
disabled dad (Pawel Brandys). He's best friends with Czarek (Przemislaw
Balinski), who suffers from bullying at home, so it's little surprise that
these two are notorious trouble makers. When Gabrysia asks Szymek to meet
her at some ruins outside the city, he thinks it's a good idea to bring
Czarek and for the two of them to rape Gabrysia and record it on their
cellphones - but that's of course easier said than done, at least for boys
as inexperienced as they are ...
Playground is most certainly a film that's anything but
easy to swallow, it draws a bleak picture of suburbia, which is only
augmented in the long and often painful takes, including the shocking
finale, which is shot in unflinching wide range with an unmoving camera
for several minutes, and though it isn't as explicit as it could have been
due to the distance of the camera, it's all the more creepy as it seems to
be shot through a documentarist's eyes. That said, despite the shocking
imagery, the film refuses to explicitely take sides, refuses to portray
the two boys as mere monsters, but leaves them with some attributes common
to 12 year olds, and doesn't leave society without blame - without
hammering the point home though.
In all, an intentionally disturbing but
also very fascinating film - just don't watch it to lift up your spirits