After 14 in production, one of the boldest projects in the history of Polish animation, Kill It and Leave This Town, will open the 20th New Horizons International Film Festival.
The film by Mariusz Wilczyński, an outstanding director of original animated films, was one of the most interesting titles presented at the last Berlinale and was awarded at the prestigious animation festival in Annecy. Wilczyński's hypnotizing work impresses with a gallery of characters with the voices of some of Poland's most renowned artistic talent, including Irena Kwiatkowska, Andrzej Wajda, Barbara Krafftówna, Daniel Olbrychski, Tomasz Stańko, Marek Kondrat, Krystyna Janda and Anna Dymna. The director's special interlocutor is his friend Tadeusz Nalepa, whose works and words give rhythm to the stream of memories and direction to the story.
This year, a difficult one for the Polish film industry, New Horizons organizers want to devote a special place in the festival repertoire to Polish productions. Kill It and Leave This Town is the first of many Polish films to be screened at the 2020 festival.
Wilczyński's film is a tender dialogue with ghosts, a blues song honoring friendship, a painstaking resurrection of people, places, dialogues, neon lights, sounds and even wisps of cigarette smoke. Autobiographical, evoking the atmosphere of a childhood under communist rule, followed by growing up in a post-transformation, increasingly colorful Poland, Kill It and Leave This Town combines poetry with harsh realism, living with the dead, nostalgia with accepting loss. Wilczyński's animation is a moving farewell to his parents' generation, one so blighted by WWII, but also a reminder that the conversation with those who shaped us never ends.
Wilczyński's media include painting, performance - creating live animated films and, above all, original animation.
"The New York Times" called the director one of the most important contemporary masters in his field, he is the only Polish animator to have a retrospective at the renowned Museum of Modern Art in New York and the first Pole whose work was presented at The National Gallery in London. Joshua Siegel, film curator at The Museum of Modern Art, wrote that Wilczyński is one of the most outstanding contemporary animators in the world. Wilczyński was also the hero of our retrospective during the 11th New Horizons International Film Festival.
Kill It and Leave this Town is not the only film audiences can enjoy on opening day of the 20th New Horizons International Film Festival. We will publish more information on that in August.