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February 8–10 & 15–17
City Cinema

14A, sexual content
Dir: Pawel Pawlikowski, Poland, 88 min. Joanna Kulig, Tomasz Kot, Agata Kulesza. In Polish with some French, Russian, German, and Croatian with English subtitles. Cannes Festival winner, Best Director

Cold War“Shot in the same inky black-and-white as his haunting, Oscar-winning Ida, director Pawel Pawlikowski’s Cold War resembles a waking dream. And a ravishingly romantic one at that. The film opens in 1949, when a beautiful provincial girl named Zula (the mesmerizing Joanna Kulig) meets a pianist named Wiktor. Zula is auditioning for a Polish performance ensemble that’s bringing rural folk music to the wider world. These peasant songs, like Poland’s dying traditions, are in danger of being lost as the country reels from the aftermath of World War II under Soviet rule. It doesn’t take long for the fiery Zula and the more reserved Wiktor to fall madly in love. But fate—and politics—will soon tear them apart. For a while, at least. Even in exile, these two doomed lovers are too deeply connected to stay apart for long… What sticks with you about Pawlikowski’s transporting, heartbreaking film—more than its gorgeous monochrome look and the jazzy, smoky torch songs that fuel its second half—is Kulig, who with her tempestuous moods, sensual abandon, and aching melancholy is a rare kind of screen presence. You’d follow her anywhere… Cold War captures what it feels like to be swept up in amour fou, where the only thing more unimaginable than living with someone is living without them.”—Chris Nashawaty, Entertainment Weekly

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