A new series of films sheds light on how everyday folk in Poland sought to express themselves despite their nation being clasped in the grip of Communisim.
The movies in the sequence Guide to the Poles show how, through music, fashion, sex, magic, adventure and toys, individualism shone through the oppressive veil cast over post-war Poland.
Beats of Freedom is the first film in the cycle, exploring how rock music united the younger generation. The second film, Political Dress, shows Polish spirit emerging through home-made fashion in response to the limited range available in the shops. The Art of Freedom, the next movie, is the astonishing tale of a group of mountaineers who circumvented the need for funds, equipment and passports, to earn reputations among the best climbers on the planet, then Toys demonstrates the ingenuity of children in making entertainment from just about anything. Finally, Art of Disappearing is about the more personal sphere – sex, religion and voodoo.
All of the movies were co-produced by the Adam Mickiewicz Institute, which has clips on its website.
Picture: Art of Disappearing (Otter Films)
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