email print share on facebook share on twitter share on google+

FESTIVALS Poland

Silent Night wins the Golden Lions at Gdynia

by 

- Piotr Domalewski’s debut feature has won the top prize at the 42nd edition of the Polish Film Festival

Silent Night wins the Golden Lions at Gdynia
Director Piotr Domalewski with his Golden Lions for Silent Night

The jury’s verdict, announced on Saturday evening at the 42nd Polish Film Festival in Gdynia, came as no surprise: Silent Night [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Piotr Domalewski
film profile
]
by newcomer Piotr Domalewski took home the Golden Lions, after already winning the Film Critics’ Prize and being highly praised by both the press and the audience. The plot centres on thirty-something Adam, who returns home for Christmas from his contracting job in Amsterdam. As the evening unfolds, the festive mood becomes more and more sombre, and old wounds start to open up again. The unnerving pace of the film is intensified by some wonderful cinematography by Piotr Sobociński Jr (Rose [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, Nude Area [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
, Aurora Borealis: Northern Lights [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
) and great performances by the ensemble cast, comprising Dawid Ogrodnik, Tomasz Ziętek, Jowita Budnik, Adam Cywka, Arkadiusz Jakubik and Agnieszka Suchora. Ogrodnik (The Last Family [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, Ida [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Pawel Pawlikowski
interview: Pawel Pawlikowski
film profile
]
), who plays one of the main characters, nabbed the Best Actor in a Leading Role Award for his performance. Domalewski’s film instantly brings to mind Cristi Puiu’s Sieranevada [+see also:
film review
trailer
Q&A: Cristi Puiu
film profile
]
and the early works of Wojciech Smarzowski (The Wedding, Dark House), but also proves that he is a new talent and a strong voice in Polish cinema.

(The article continues below - Commercial information)

The Silver Lions were presented to Birds Are Singing in Kigali [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Joanna Kos-Krauze
film profile
]
, directed by Joanna Kos-Krauze and the late Krzysztof Krauze,while the two leading ladies, Jowita Budnik and Eliane Umihire, won the Best Actress in a Leading Role Award. Agnieszka Holland and Kasia Adamik’s Spoor [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Agnieszka Holland
interview: Zofia Wichlacz
film profile
]
snagged the Best Directing Award, and newcomer Jagoda Szelc won in the Best Screenplay category for her debut feature, Tower. A Bright Day [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Jagoda Szelc
film profile
]
. Photon [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by visual artist Norman Leto won the Visions Apart Competition, and the Best Short Film Award was presented to Damian Kocur for Nothing New Under the Sun.

The 42nd Polish Film Festival’s programme was generally considered strong and diverse, and introduced new talents such as Domalewski, Szelc and Paweł Maślona, who directed Panic Attack [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Pawel Maslona
film profile
]
.

Here is the full list of award winners:

Golden Lions
Silent Night [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Piotr Domalewski
film profile
]
– Piotr Domalewski

Silver Lions
Birds Are Singing in Kigali [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Joanna Kos-Krauze
film profile
]
– Joanna Kos-Krauze, Krzysztof Krauze

Best Directing
Agnieszka Holland, Kasia Adamik – Spoor [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Agnieszka Holland
interview: Zofia Wichlacz
film profile
]

Best Screenplay
Jagoda Szelc - Tower. A Bright Day [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Jagoda Szelc
film profile
]

Best Actress in a Leading Role
Jowita Budnik and Eliane Umuhire – Birds Are Singing in Kigali

Best Actor in a Leading Role
Dawid Ogrodnik – Silent Night

Best Professional Acting Debut
Kamila Kamińska – The Fastest [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]

Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Magdalena Popławska – Panic Attack

Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Łukasz Simlat – Amok [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]

Best Cinematography
Lennert Hillege Between Words [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Urszula Antoniak
film profile
]

Best Score
Sandro di Stefano – The Man with the Magic Box

Best Production Design
Marek Warszewski ­– The Fastest

Best Sound
Mirosław Makowski, Maciej Pawłowski, Jan Schermer – Between Words

Best Editing
Katarzyna Leśniak – Birds Are Singing in Kigali

Best Make-up
Janusz Kaleja ­– Spoor

Best Costumes
Agata Culak – Reconciliation

Audience Award
The Fastest –
Lukasz Palkowski

Visions Apart Award
Photon [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
– Norman Leto

Best Short Film
Nothing New Under the Sun – Damian Kocur

Did you enjoy reading this article? Please subscribe to our newsletter to receive more stories like this directly in your inbox.