The Last Family

Dir.: Jan P. Matuszynski | Poland 2016 | 124 min

Zdzislaw Beksinski is apparently Guillermo del Toro's favourite painter, and the inspiration from the Polish surrealist is also evident in films such as 'Pan's Labyrinth'. Jan P. Matuszyński, on the other hand, takes a completely different approach in his depiction of the last 28 years of Beksinski's life. Instead of trying to match his protagonist's wild, phantasmagoric style, he gives us an intimate and close-up story in widescreen images from the Warsaw apartment that Beksinski rarely left. It is impressive that it was here – where he had a view to little else than concrete blocks – that he could create his boundless works. But it is just as impressive that his family didn't fall apart, and that is the real story here. His wife Zofia was equipped with a supernatural patience that allowed her to deal with her quixotic husband and not least their adult son Tomasz, who received LPs from the West and was a popular radio DJ, but who was also suicidal and haunted by destructive demons. It was as if he and his father shared the same apocalyptic visions, but processed them differently. But this is written between the brushstrokes, as Matuszyński never interprets, but simply presents (family) life to us as it is. The outcome is tragic, as any Wikipedia entry on the subject will reveal, but the story is empathetic and chucklingly heart-warming. And the Polish veteran Andrzej Seweryn ('Schindler's List') is absolutely superb as the artistic one-of-a-kind, who constantly produces in the eye of the storm he himself has created.

Original Title
Ostatnia Rodzina
Title
The Last Family
Country
Poland
Release Year
2016
Duration
124 min.
Directors
Jan P. Matuszynski
Producer
Leszek Bodzak, Aneta Hickinbotham
Script
Cast
Andrzej Seweryn, Dawid Ogrodnik, Aleksandra Konieczna, Andrzej Chyra, Magdalena Boczarska, Alicja Karluk, Zofia Perczyńska, Danuta Nagórna
Camera
Kacper Fertacz
Sound
Jarosław Bajdowski, Kacper Habisiak, Marcin Kasiński
Editor
Przemysław Chruścielewski
Music
Atanas Valkov
Production Company
Aurum Film
Version
Dialogue: English Subtitles
Tempo
2
Thrills
3
Sighs
7
Laughs
3
Look
7
Food for thought
6