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The Long Strange Trips of Wojciech Jerzy Has

Updated: Mar 22

“The Long Strange Trips of Wojciech Jerzy Has” is a comprehensive celebration of the Polish filmmaker’s inventive filmography, presenting all of Has’s 14 features as well as his early short films (documentaries and mini-parables), in new digital restorations:

March 22 through March 31

at the Walter Reade Theater, 165 W. 65th St. & Broadway, Lincoln Center, mid-Manhattan.

The retrospective is organized by Dan Sullivan (FLC), Jędrzej Sabliński (DI Factory) and Tomek Smolarski (Polish Cultural Institute New York), and co-financed by Polish Film Institute.

Wojciech Jerzy Has (1 April 1945, in Kraków – 3 October 2000, in Łódź) was a celebrated Polish film director known for his surrealistic and visionary approach to cinema. His most famous works include "The Saragossa Manuscript" (1965) and "The Hourglass Sanatorium" (1973), which showcased his mastery in blending fantasy, psychological depth, and dark humor. Has's films continue to be revered for their artistic innovation and exploration of complex themes.

Filmography of Has’s feature films:

·         1947 Harmonia (Harmony) undistributed.

·         1957 Pętla (The Noose), based on a short story by Marek Hłasko, with Gustaw Holoubek as Kuba.

·         1958 Pożegnania (Farewells), based on a novel by Stanisław Dygat. Awards: 1959 - Locarno International Film Festival, FIPRESCI Award.

·         1959 Wspólny pokój (Roomers/ One Room Tenants) based on an autobiographical novel by Zbigniew Uniłowski (Warsaw of the 1930s).

·         1960 Rozstanie (Goodbye to the Past), screenplay by Jadwiga Żylińska based on her own short story, with Lidia Wysocka (actress Magdalena).

·         1961 Złoto (Gold Dreams) screenplay by Bohdan Czeszko. (Has appears in this film in a cameo role, as a police officer.)

·         1962 Jak być kochaną (How to Be Loved) based on a short story by Kazimierz Brandys, with Barbara Kraftówna as Felicja. Awards: 1962 - Golden Gate Awards at the San Francisco International Film Festival; 1964 - FIPRESCI Award.

·         1964 Rękopis znaleziony w Saragossie (The Saragossa Manuscript), based on an eighteenth-century picaresque novel by Jan Potocki - a traveler, swashbuckling adventurer, and writer. With great performance by Zbigniew Cybulski as Alfons van Worden and Elżbieta Czyżewska as Donna Frasquetta Salero, and a fabulous cast including Iga Cembrzyńska (Princess Emina), Barbara Kraftówna (Camilla de Tormez), Zdzisław Maklakiewicz (Don Roque Busqueros), Leon Niemczyk (Don Avadoro), Adam Pawlikowski (Don Pedro Uzeda) and Beata Tyszkiewicz (Donna Rebecca), plus music by young Krzysztof Penderecki. Awards: 1965 - Edinburgh International Film Festival, San Sebastian International Film Festival; 1971 - Spanish Film Critics' Award. (Cited among the best loved films by Martin Scorsese, David Lynch and Francis Ford Coppola.)

·         1966 Szyfry (Codes), screenplay by Andrzej Kijowski based on his own short story.

·         1968 Lalka (The Doll), based on the novel by Bolesław Prus, with Mariusz Dmochowski as Stanisław Wokulski, Beata Tyszkiewicz down-on-her-luck Contessa Izabela Łęcka, and Tadeusz Fijewski as Ignacy Rzecki, plus Wiesław Gołas, Kalina Jędrusik, Bodumił Kobiela… (In 1977, Prus's novel also served as the basis for a television mini-series directed by Ryszard Ber. Both versions were the subject of heated discussion by viewers.) Awards: 1969 - Panama International Film Festival - Grand Prix.

·         1973 Sanatorium pod Klepsydrą (The Hourglass Sanatorium) adaptation of the prose works of Bruno Schulz, with Jan Nowicki (Józef).  Awards: 1973 - Cannes International Film Festival, the Jury Award; 1974 - Trieste International Festival of Fantasy Films - Golden Asteroid; Gdynia, Festival of Polish Feature Films.

·         1982 Nieciekawa historia (An Uneventful Story), based on a short story by Anton Chekhov.

·         1984 Pismak (Write and Fight), screenplay by Władysław Terlecki based on his own satirical novel.

·         1985 Osobisty pamiętnik grzesznika przez niego samego spisany (The Memoirs of a Sinner), based on 1824 gothic-horror novel by James Hogg, a Scottish poet, with music by Jerzy Maksymiuk.

·         1988 Niezwykła podróż Baltazara Kobera (The Tribulations of Balthazar Kober), based on the novel by Frédérick Tristan about a voyage across plague-ravaged Germany fleeing the Inquisition in 16th century Europe.

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