The Decalogue: One (1989, Krzysztof Kieslowski)

For the first episode of “The Decalogue,” director Kieslowski and co-writer Krzysztof Piesiewicz go straight for the jugular. Kieslowski fills the episode with foreshadowing until it spills over. And no symbolism is too obvious.

One is about a computer programming professor (Henryk Baranowski) and his similarly tech-enthusiastic son (Wojciech Klata). The tech is poorly visualized–in one scene, Baranowski runs a couple DIR commands and Kieslowski treats it like the second coming, which is the point. These fellows have abandoned God for their home computer.

Or maybe Baranowski is just a really bad dad. One’s full of symbolism, one’s full of story. Kieslowski goes with the former.

Both Klata and Baranowski are good in too obviously written roles. Great music from Zbigniew Preisner and lovely photography by Wieslaw Zdort.

What’s strange is how Kieslowski trusts the viewer to understand the little stuff, but not the big, obvious stuff.

1/3Not Recommended


Directed by Krzysztof Kieslowski; written by Kieslowski and Krzysztof Piesiewicz; director of photography, Wieslaw Zdort; edited by Ewa Smal; music by Zbigniew Preisner; production designer, Halina Dobrowolska; produced by Ryszard Chutkowski; released by Warner Bros.

Starring Henryk Baranowski (Krzysztof), Wojciech Klata (Pawel), Maja Komorowska (Irena), Maria Gladkowska (Girl) and Ewa Kania (Ewa Jezierska).

Leave a Reply

Scroll to Top