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Year 1863
Rok 1863
dir. Edward Puchalski / Poland 1922 / 93’
silent film with live music
subtitles: English


Ryszard Sobiszewski, Stanisława Chrzanowska, Helena Marcello-Palińska, Maria Hryniewicz, Aleksander Zelwerowicz

Film description

Reconstructed as part of the Nitrofilm project, this is the first screen adaptation in the history of Polish cinema of Stefan Żeromski’s novel The Faithful River. During one of the battles of the January Uprising, a young prince named Józef Odrowąż miraculously survives. Seriously wounded, he heads toward a nearby village, where he is captured and held by hostile peasants. He is saved, and taken to a manor house in Niezdoły, where he is cared for by Salomea Brynicka and her elderly, nearly deaf servant, Szczepan Podkurek. They manage to hide the badly wounded insurgent during several searches by the soldiers of the invading army. Feelings begin to develop between the young man and woman. Some time later, emissaries of the Duchess Odrowążyna arrive at the house in Niezdoły, looking for the Duchess’s missing son. The role of the wounded Prince was played by Ryszard Sobiszewski, a popular actor, dancer, and teacher in the early 1920s. The film also featured the well-known and talented theater actresses Stanisława Chrzanowska and Helena Marcello-Palińska, while actual insurgents from the January Uprising in 1863 appeared as extras.

The film score will be performed live by DesOrient on Wrocław’s Market Square.

Marta Maślanka - dulcimer

Małgorzata Szarlik - Violin

Mateusz Stankiewicz - accordion

Bogdan Kupisiewicz - guitar

Mariusz Puchłowski - flutes

Robert Siwak - percussion

Michał Woźniak - contrabass

Information about director

Edward Puchalski

(1874 - 1942) The film’s director and screenwriter, Leonard Buczkowski, is recognized as a pioneer of Polish cinema. He first worked as a journalist and later worked with amateur troupes in Silesia. In 1913, he started working on a screen adaptation of Henryk Sienkiewicz’s Trilogy, but the tsarist authorities prevented him from continuing his work on the film. He spent World War I in Russia, where he worked in film studios, and after some time, he began running his own studio there. After his return to Poland, he became one of the country’s best-known film directors and screenwriters.

Selected filmography

1913 Obrona Częstochowy

1921 Tragedia Rosji i jej trzy epoki

1922 Rok 1863

1926 Trędowata

1928 Ludzie dzisiejsi

Cast & Crew

director: Edward Puchalski
screenplay: Edward Puchalski (based on Stefan Żeromski's novel)
cinematography: Albert Wywerka
cast: Ryszard Sobiszewski, Stanisława Chrzanowska, Helena Marcello-Palińska, Maria Hryniewicz, Aleksander Zelwerowicz
production: kopia z 1922 roku – Phos, kopia z 1932 roku - Ventafilm
sales: Filmoteka Narodowa
language: Polish
colouration: b&w
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