[CYCLE] THE DECALOGUE 9 : Thou shall not covet the wife of another

On the occasion of the re-release in restored version of the ten parts of the Decalogue of Kieslowski distributed by Diaphana, back on one of the works of the founders of cinema is the european post-Walesa, a monument of ten hours made by one of the greatest directors of his time. Box of various themes and navigating between the social and the religion, we chroniquerons the entirety of the episodes, four hands, with each day a new article. Study on a case-by-case basis within a follow-up analysis more broad : we find the author behind the quilt, the thought behind the human drama.

  • The Decalogue 1
  • The Decalogue 2
  • The Decalogue 3
  • The Decalogue 4
  • The Decalogue 5
  • The Decalogue 6
  • The Decalogue 7
  • The Decalogue 8
  • The Decalogue 9
  • The Decalogue 10

Among the first words spoken in this penultimate episode, we hear a dialogue that could sound like a motto for the series : “What do you want to know ? – The truth.”. If this 9th part focuses on the perjury of lust and infidelity, the vice of falsehood is also approached. Built around situations where the non-communication within a couple can lead to the worst, this episode has two achievements relating to it. To claim it as a work in-itself, independent, and reshape at the same time of the types of character encountered in other episodes.


THE DECALOGUE 9 – You shall not covet the wife of others

The first success of this episode is that the music of Zbigniew Preisner, which is remarkable and more or less present in each episode, is there any scope to deploy. Still in a coexistence in balance with the images. The music disturbing the generic, which are composed of a series of three treble notes on the piano, thus returns throughout the episode. Available in a litany and amplified by a broader palette, it accompanies the small mistakes that lead to the drama final.

“The music of Zbigniew Preisner, which is remarkable and more or less present in each episode, is there any scope to deploy.”

The episode begins with a verdict : Novel, a doctor, receives medical testing. It is impotent. Death in the soul, he teaches it to his wife Hanka and suggests him to leave or take a lover. In love, she prefers to stay with him. But, without the knowledge of the Novel, she attempts an affair with a lover. Worried, of nature to be jealous, Roman is going to spy on his wife and learn of the adultery. In addition to the quality of this episode, his main asset is that it establishes many relationships with the other episodes.

As the episode 8, he refers almost directly to the episode 2 (You shall not commit point of perjury). Its like, it contains a doctor, an adulterous woman, a husband made a mistake and a violation of the oath. However, the allocation of roles has varied. The doctor became the husband cheated and the violation of oath is reciprocal. If the woman, by deceiving the husband, violates the law of marriage, the husband also, by accusing his wife of adultery, although it was enjoined, violated his promise.

This reconfiguration by episode 9 of the geometry setting of the episode 2 reinforces one of the themes property of the DECALOGUE : everything is connected.

This overall unity of the components of the series evokes the philosophy of Leibniz. Knowing the appetite of Kieslowski for this domain of thought, the concepts of the philosopher in him were probably not foreigners. Leibniz conceptualized in particular the notion of “monad”.

The monad is not only one, but still unique, that is to say different from everything else. However, the action of the monad is related, step by step, to the events of the world. It carries within it the trace of all the universe. Each episode is the monad, the atom, who lives both in itself and in correlation with other, independent and molar. This is not the own of each series is to proceed in this way (each episode would contain all of the series). THE DECALOGUE to this singularity to build each episode as a homogeneity waterproof understood yet and expanded in a more global.

“Each episode is the monad, the atom, who lives both in itself and in correlation with other, independent and molar.”

After this discovery joyful to grasp all the deep intellectual and sensitive of the whole, this episode is not without inequality. One of the subtleties of the work, and one of the delights to discover in each episode is the clarification in the thread of the story of the relationship between the characters. In the present case, the relations between Roman and Hanka are very quickly established, they live together. Therefore, the drama switches to the drama and impact of the impotence of the husband in the couple becomes sometimes little better than a crisis in love. The main issue that emerges, swelled a little too much for the needs of drama, are the attempts of suicide of the husband, shot dead by jealousy.

At the same time, one of the lessons strong dished out by the series is only defended no better than in this episode : sin begets sin. The husband helpless, in desperation, pushes his wife to adultery. Lover, lover, covets the wife of another. Jealous, the husband is engaged in espionage. Bruised, and he attempts suicide. Writing this chain of sins successive joined the project of links that Kieslowski expands on these ten episodes.

We have not yet spoken of this presence of diffuse but continuous in the series. This kind of angel taiseux of providence that runs through each episode, at the bend of a plan. Played by actor Polish Artur Barcis, he opened the series in episode 1, under a coat and in front of a fire in winter, at the foot of a lake of ice, staring right in front of the camera. His face elongated and his blue eyes piercing in fact the witness mutique, which binds all the episodes. And if the secret God who was stirring the humans, it was him ?

Flavien Poncet

Your opinion ?


Original title : Jeden Dekalog

Realization : Krzysztof Kieslowski

Scenario : Krzysztof Kieslowski

Main actors : Maja Komorowska, Wojciech Klata, Henryk Baranowski

Country of origin : Poland

Output EN : June 29, 2016

Output POL: 1988

Duration : 10 parts of 50 min

Distributor : Diaphana Distribution


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