“Aftermath”

Just watched “the most controversial Polish film ever” – “Aftermath” (“Pokłosie”). It is… thought provoking. Causing anxiety. Making me feel uneasy. I remember media discussions about it, however, up until today I had not seen it. It’s a  2012 Polish film written and directed by Władysław Pasikowski. It’s a Holocaust related drame inspired by our difficult and painful history (some cases when the Poles killed their Jewish neighbours during the World War II). It’s so tragic that even decades after the war had finished, we still can’t reach the conclusion of what exactly had happened. Old people don’t want to talk about it, young people don’t want to believe it, many of them think it’s against the whole state of Poland.

The film was praised by government officials, leading cultural figures and and historians. However, many of typical spectators were infuriated. The movie was condemned by some nationalist politicians, banned in some towns and excoriated on the Internet. Some described the film as “mendacious and harmful for Poles”. Was it? I have mixed feelings. I feel sad after watching it, but I still can imagine that this story could have happened. Not necessarily in Poland, in other places, too. But the fact that we as a nation suffered so much during the occupation, doesn’t mean that we were all angels.

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