Coming to theatres this Friday from writer/director Pawel Pawlikowski and Music Box Films comes a story of a young woman named IDA.
This film tells the story of Anna (Agata Trzebuckowska), a young woman in 1962 who is about to take her final vows to become a nun in Poland. Before she can do so the Mother Superior informs her that there is an Aunt Wanda, her mother’s sister that Anna must visit.
Arriving to meet her long lost aunt, Anna discovers so many family secrets. First off, Anna is really Ida – a Jew whose parents where killed during the Nazi occupation of Poland. Wanda (Agata Kulesza) isn’t quite a normal aunt either, but instead a tough state prosecutor who has demons of her own.
These two woman take a journey back to discover the truth about what really happened to their family members and along the way get to know one another.
FINAL WORD: Trzebuckowaska as Anna/Ida is just stunning to watch. With an innocent face that quietly hides all the questions she has, this actress lets everything show her in eyes. That’s a treat as the film is shot in amazing black and white. Watching her curiosity grow as the film progresses, it is difficult not to be mesmerized by this young woman.
Kulesza as Wanda is the total opposite. A chain smoking, loud, opinionated, hard drinking woman who languishes in one night stands I absolutely love her! She challenges Anna/Ida at every turn but in the bigger picture it is her own soul she questions. I absolutely adored Kulesza performance and was stunned by the films end.
This film premiered at the Telluride and Toronto International Film Festival winning the FIPRESCI Award for the Best Film. Continuing to win awards they would include the London Film Festival, Warsaw Film Festival and the Official Selection at Sundance, New York and Jewish Film Festivals.
Other cast include: Joanna Kulig as the Singer, Dawid Ogrodnik as the Musician, Adam Szyszkowski as Feliks Skiba, Jerzy Trela as Szymon Skiba, and Halina Skoczynska as Mother Superior.
TUBS OF POPCORN: I give IDA three and a half tubs of popcorn out of five. This truly is an amazing look at a the lives of these two women. Decisions that were made by each of them are painful yet still full of learning. One woman openly fights religion at every turn with anger and the other quietly seeking worldly answers.
The cinematography is beautiful and the contrast of black and whites are in moments of the film almost a grayish hue. The white snow just makes the characters stand out even more. The forest scene is so haunting in this medium that there didn’t need to be any words spoken to get the message and solve the mystery. I truly did appreciate every facet of the film including the music.
Take a moment to see a visually stunning and pure story of two women from the same family at opposite ends of life.
In the end – each must find their own path of forgiveness.