The Decalogue: Two (1990, Krzysztof Kieslowski)

This episode of “The Decalogue” is a quiet, thoughtful story about a doctor and the wife of one of his patients. They’re neighbors, which puts them in an uncomfortable proximity as the wife has a secret from her husband and forces the doctor into her confidence.

The scenes between these characters–the doctor played by Aleksander Bardini, the wife by Krystyna Janda–amount for probably fifteen minutes of Two. The film runs almost an hour; most of the time, Kieslowski is examining Bardini and Janda. He applies a different level of focus throughout; Janda isn’t clear until the end, but Bardini’s character’s most telling scene is his first. There’s more exposition later, further exploration into his life to explain him, but it’s not telling, just interesting.

And beautifully acted. Kieslowski never goes overboard with symbolism, but Two wouldn’t work near as well without the fantastic performances from Bardini and Janda.

3/3Highly Recommended


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

Starring Krystyna Janda (Dorota Geller), Aleksander Bardini (Doctor) and Olgierd Lukaszewicz (Andrzej Geller).

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