The Promised Land
1974 | 163 min | Colour | DCP
Adapted from Nobel Laureate Władysław Reymont's classic 1897 novel, The Promised Land is the story of three friends one Polish, one German and one Jewish - united in their ruthless pursuit of fortune. With stunning camerawork and sumptuous design, Wajda depicts the explosive energy of a world being transformed by rampant industrialisation. Nominated for the Best Foreign Film Oscar, Wajda's lavish epic is a wry, incisive, shocking and elegantly realized Dickensian tale of greed, human cruelty, exploitation and betrayal. This visceral examination of unbridled capitalism remains morally and politically incisive today.
"The Promised Land provides a panoramic view of the industrial revolution that was at its height in Łódź by the end of the 19th century. This is a world in which everything and everyone is enslaved to the market, with a huge gulf between the impoverished workers and the rich capitalists. The narrative follows the lives of three close friends from very different backgrounds: a Polish factory engineer, Karol Borowiecki, a Jewish money broker, Moryc Welt, and a German, Max Baum, whose father owns a declining business. Together they decide to compete with the wealthy owners of the existing textile factories and build one of their own. As their often quoted motto states, “We have nothing, which means we have enough!”” – David Thompson