March 12, 2015

Warsaw 44 (2014)

Warsaw 44 (2014) - Movie Review
Directed by: Jan Komasa
Country: Poland

Movie Review: Love and hate are expressed in so many different ways in “Warsaw 44”, the latest narrative feature from Polish filmmaker Jan Komasa (“Suicide Room”). This war drama, set in occupied Poland, is just another story about the Resistance facing Nazi oppressors, failing to add anything relevant to the theme when compared with other recent holocaust pieces of the same country like “In Darkness”, “Ida”, or the not so successful but acceptable “Aftermath”. To tell the truth, Komasa seemed just interested in present us with a festival of explosions, agony, death, and gutted people on the verge of madness. It’s also a love story shattered by the cruelty of war, but lightly handled and unconvincing in its cynical posture. Along its exhaustive 130 minutes, we follow Jasio, a young man who takes care of his depressive mother (a renowned actress) and sensitive little brother, after his father has been carried off by war. Despite having promised to his mother that he would stay out of trouble, Jasio swears loyalty to the Fatherland and joins a group of friends in the fierce battle to retrieve the already devastated city. Prone to be a hero, the courageous Jasio will face the horrors of war and witness his family being killed, shot in the head. Hopeless, wound and apathetic, can the power of love still save him? “Warsaw 44” is not completely balanced in its approach, toggling between festive companionships and heroic acts in its first two parts, just to enter in 'gruesome mode' in the last third. While some chaotic scenes seemed too orderly put together to be real, others touch the grotesque – how about human flesh and blood falling from the skies after a bomb burst? In a saturated genre, the film relies too much on the graphical side to impress. Mr. Komasa should know this is not enough.

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