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In Full Gallop

Krzysztof Zanussi
UK 1995 / 106’

An autobiographical return to childhood in a humorous and sentimental tone served as a pretext for Zanussi to discuss the subject of "intellectual and communism". The main character's aunt has an original idea on how to protect the ethos of intelligentsia in the dark Stalinist time - she pretends to have a twin sister. The double identity allows her to combine a tranquil life with extremely revolutionary activities. Defending herself against lowering of her social status, she becomes a kind of Konrad Wallenrod, treating all compromises (including the alleged twin's membership of the party) as an adventure. Zanussi himself indicated the child Hubert as his on-screen alter ego, but it seems that he identifies himself with the aunt as well - after all, film art in communist Poland required camouflage, as applied by the main character. The expressive aunt is admirably played by Maja Komorowska. The background is presented from a child's perspective, somewhat nostalgic, with smiling intellectuals riding on horses and caricature-like apparatchiks. It resembles an old photo taken out of a family album.

Mirella Napolska

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