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29th July, 22:00
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Year 1863
Rok 1863
dir. Edward Puchalski / Poland 1922 / 93’
silent film with live music
subtitles: English
Films on the Square: Year 1863 With Live Music

July 29 (Tuesday), 10:00 p.m. Rynek (Market Square)

An evening with the National Film Archive: Year 1863

The program of the 14th T-Mobile New Horizons International Film Festival will include a screening of Edward Puchalski’s legendary 1922 silent film Year 1863, which was digitally reconstructed as part of the Polish National Film Archive’s Nitrofilm project. The music will be performed live on Wrocław’s Market Square by the group Zespół DesOrient, which includes the following members:

Marta Maślanka - dulcimer

Małgorzata Szarlik - violin

Mateusz Stankiewicz - accordion

Bogdan Kupisiewicz - guitar

Mariusz Puchłowski - flute

Robert Siwak - percussion

Michał Woźniak - contrabass

Year 1863 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, Józef Odrowąż miraculously survives. Seriously wounded, he heads toward a nearby village, where he is captured and held by hostile peasants. He is saved by a peasant woman, however, 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. It turns out that this stranger is, in fact, a prince.

Director Edward Puchalski began his film career during World War I, enjoying success in the Russian Empire. After his return to Poland, he became one of the country’s best-known directors and screenwriters. The film was made in the early years of cinema following the rebirth of the Polish state. With that in mind, we should appreciate the quality of its production even more.

The role of wounded Prince Odrowąż was played by Ryszard Sobiszewski, a popular actor in the early 1920s. Also a dancer and teacher (born in 1888, he was still teaching dance in the 1960s), he had to retire from his film career because of a problem with his eyes. The film also featured performances by talented and well-known theater actors, whose adventure in film ended with their participation in a small number of productions in the early 1920s. Thus, this is also a unique opportunity to see unforgettable performances by actresses Stanisława Chrzanowska and Helena Marcello-Palińska. In addition, actual insurgents from the January Uprising in 1863 appeared in the film as extras.

Work on the reconstruction of Puchalski’s film took two years and was carried out as part of the Nitrofilm project, which is aimed at the conservation and digitization of feature films from the prewar period. Experts from the National Film Archive were able to complete their work on all of the material related to this film, one of the oldest monuments to Polish cinema.

My NH
14th edition archive website (year 2014).
Go to the current edition website:
www.nowehoryzonty.pl
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