[CYCLE] THE TEN commandments : introduction

One of the main events of this summer 2016 is not an advert but a first in the French theatres of a work, however, dated 1988. The distribution, with Diaphana, in digital 2K of the DECALOGUE of Krzysztof Kieslowski on the screens is a unique opportunity to see the tv series to migrate in one of her most prolific appearances on movie screens. An opportunity to discover, also this project is extremely ambitious : to adapt in ten movies of the cases of conscience around the Ten biblical Commandments.

The case of filmmakers trying their hand at the format of the tv series are legions today (Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Bruno Dumont, Gus Van Sant, Jane Campion, etc.). Something much more rare in ‘ 88, the series is still far away to have its letters of nobility. Exception example : in 1980, Rainer Werner Fassbinder had already done its work-amount adjusting Döblin for the tv series Berlin Alexanderplatz.

In 1988, Kieslowski is already a cardinal in the landscape of Polish cinema. Originating in the documentary, such as the DECALOGUE bears the mark, he turns to fiction in the mid 70’s. It comes to feature film to tv with the tv – staff (1975). It’ll come back to it often while expanding works of cinema, including The scar (76), The Chance (86), The double life of Veronique (91) and his trilogy Three Colours : Blue, White, Red (93-94).

More than a series, ten films are presented as a ” cycle “, a large movement of the toggle where the horrors of existence circulate in the small perimeter of a HLM Polish.

Director of the kaleidoscope, his films are driven by a fundamental question in cinema as in art : the point of view. Vision three angles by means of three characters in The Random, difractassions in ten time of the human comedy in THE DECALOGUE, or mesh triptych of a parisian neighborhood with Three Colors, Kieslowski knows the relativity of the look, the versatility of the real, and makes them in their ambiguity through each of his films.

In this, THE DECALOGUE is perhaps the pinnacle of his cinema. More than a series, ten films are presented as a ” cycle “, a large movement of the toggle where the horrors of existence circulate in the small perimeter of a HLM Polish. All intersected by the penetrating music of Zbigniew Preisner (author, it must be remembered, of the sublime Lacrimosa used by Malick in Tree of Life), each of the episodes, attached to “illustrate” a commandment of the Tables of the Law, has a leader different operator.

The whole has, however, of the homogeneity. Kieslowski plays with the viewer on the Ten Commandments. The episodes do not give their name, leaving it free to guess which act it is. Not cloisonnant not every part in his command, the filmmaker has his series as a network where the problem of perjury rubs shoulders with that of lust, where the duty of honor is linked to that of the lie. Clever way to express that the sin is not exclusive of others, nor even that of its neighbour, but that of everyone, self included. Fully, THE DECALOGUE is a cycle more than a series, a work which is spinning, and that associates, for beyond his mastery, the spectator to the characters, the staging of cinema in the TV device, the prosaic to the soviet Polish christianity.

As a series that we discover on the long course, Vivien and I propose to you today, each day, for ten days, to discover a text on one of the films before concluding with a section summary.

On the right side of our text, 10 visual. As for each film. Click on the poster Polish of an episode to discover our analysis, or browse randomly the series to the wire of your desires. In the order, or at random, go through what Kubrick himself was said to be the only film that can claim the title of “masterpiece”.


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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