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The Contract

Krzysztof Zanussi
Poland 1980 / 108’

A film spectacle of moral anxiety. This social satire refers to Wyspiański - a wedding is a pretext for a diagnosis of the condition of the contemporary elite and its moral bankruptcy. The Contract is funny and bitter at the same time; there are many clever observations and interesting episodes.

A wedding of a corrupt doctor's son and party apparatchik's daughter has to be a success, even if the bride escapes from the church. At a reception in the doctor's villa there are intellectuals, people of power, and even a man from the party leadership, said to be able to do anything. There is an aunt - a dancer, who comes from the West with her eccentric daughter and darling little dog, there are artists, and also some complete strangers. In this "elite" even those who seem independent turn out to be conformists after all. Almost from the beginning of the reception there is something wrong. Petty scandals at the wedding grow more and more spectacular, but they are all taken lightly. Will the newly-weds, a couple of young rebels, have enough strength to reject the influence of this milieu, dominated by suspicious interdependencies?

Mirella Napolska

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