When assessing what provokes pleasure in my brain when watching a film there’s two ways to go about it. There’s the quantifiable, factual, observable. The form, the style, the colour scheme, the acting, the character design, the subtext. And then there’s the ineffable gut sensation, the twitch, the hunch, the subconscious wave of relentlessness, that connects your mind to watch you see based on its measure of truthfulness.
It’s the only way to deeply relate to a Polish character study drama, from 1977, called Camouflage. It tells the story of a group of students out on a retreat, led by an older cynical teacher and a younger idealistic one. The film then follows the clash of their world-views, with one cunningly navigating the authoritarian system, bending and surviving, while the other coming in direct conflict, speaking out and suffering. A parable is a truth carrying machine.
Krzysztof Zanussi. Never heard of him, will follow.
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