Director: Malgoska Szumowska Writers: Malgoska Szumowska and Michal Englert
Cast: Andrzej Chyra, Mateusz Kosciukieiwcz, Lukasz Simlat, Maja Ostaszewska
Malgoska Szumowska’s second outing after the acclaimed Elles centres on Adam, a celibate Catholic priest who works with delinquent teenagers in a village in rural Poland.
As Adam, Andrzej Chyra is well cast and generates a profound benevolence and warmth that’s the nearest feeling to true goodness that one can possibly imagine. He embodies unselfishness, empathy and kindness but also commands respect and authority in a really moving performance. Michal Englert’s soft summery visuals heavily mingled with striking imagery from Christ’s Passion render the hazy bucolic setting in a powerful yet soothing way as Adam’s calming presence gradually deepens into something more heavy and unsettling.
Despite sharing a resonating chemistry with one of the inmates Lukasz, a young simple country lad, Adam rejects his advances and also those of Ewa a blonde alcoholic, stating that he’s already spoken for (by Jesus). But he also experiences moments of despair, repression and lonliness in this moving portrait of confused emotions and abstinence and the journey towards self-discovery and self-acceptance.
With its atmospheric soundtrack this is an absorbing and emotional drama that echoes Brokeback Mountain in its intense and delicate subject-matter. MT
IN THE NAME OF is on general release from 27TH September 2013 AT THE CURZON SOHO AND THE ODEON PANTON STREET.
IN THE NAME OF WON THE TEDDY AWARD AT BERLINALE IN 2013