Close Up

25 March 2017: Man of Marble


Man of Marble
Andrzej Wajda
1976 | 154 min | Colour & B/W | DCP

Often described as the Polish Citizen Kane, Wajda’s epic Man of Marble operates as both an electrifying political saga and a compelling analysis of the nature of cinema itself. Mateusz Birkut, a bricklayer, glorified in a marble statue as a State-promoted ‘Worker’s Hero’ is subsequently removed from all official mention in 1952. Flash forward to the early 70s where young documentary filmmaker Agnieszka obsessively pursues his story. Birkut’s rise and fall and disappearance into obscurity provides Wajda with a framework for a brave reassessment of the period. Although suppressed by the authorities, Man of Marble became a milestone in Polish cinema and an undoubted influence in the subsequent dismantling of the totalitarian system in Poland.

Screening as part of our season on Andrzej Wajda and the 15th KINOTEKA Polish Film Festival: