EST. 2009

May 15, 2019

That Lyric Romance

PAWEL PAWLIKOWSKI'S COLD WAR IS A TRAGIC, ANGUISHED KIND OF ROMANCE made so beautiful, you don't mind the heartache. Set in post-war Poland, the film follows the decade-spanning, on-again off-again love affair between Wiktor and Zula, who meet at an audition for a state-sponsored musical ensemble.

Wiktor is a sophisticated composer. Zula is an impulsive performer. Their backgrounds and personalities clash, and yet intense chemistry draws them together repeatedly in spite of their rash behavior, and amidst turbulent times. The Cold War serves as a sobering backdrop to the lovers' passion, while music in a splendid range of genres brings warmth and joy.

From the a cappella renditions of Polish folk songs in barren winter fields, to the choral propaganda performances in German auditoriums, sultry cooing in Paris jazz clubs, and swinging to mid-century rock and roll, Cold War reminds of music's power to bring harmony where there is none, and elevate the spirit even in dire circumstances.


Cold War, 2018. Directed by PaweĊ‚ Pawlikowski.