Saturday, October 21, 2006

Knife in the Water

Knife in the Water
Original Title: Nóz w wodzie

Directed by: Roman Polanski, Poland, 1962
Drama / Thriller, 94 min

Distributed by Criterion Collection


Andrzej [Leon Neimczyk] and Krystyna [Jolanta Umecka] pick up a young hitchhiker [Zygmunt Malanowicz] they bring him along on their Sunday sailing outing, and the tensions are high.


I've heard and read so much about this film, how much of an important thriller classic it is, the fact that it landed Polanski on the cover of Time magazine and he received his firs Academy Award nomination, so I think that my hopes for this movie where way too high. To be honest I was quite disappointed, and didn't really enjoy it at all. Actually I fell asleep a few times, not even the brief nudity and tense moods managed to keep me awake for this quite tedious and slow movie. Yes It’s a slow film, but and there’s not much you can do on a boat and a lake if you are trying to keep it realistic and to a minimum, this based on the fact that there’s not much music and there and the hand held camera, but it just wasn’t what I was expecting from a Polanski movie. I know that it is a good movie, the play with jealousy and the tense emotional play between Andrzej and Krystyna as they play each other against each other once the hitchhiker is onboard, and I like the twist that you think he’s going to be the one creating the chaos, but it just didn’t get me going. Damn it, Repulsion 1965 is on my list of favourites, Rosemary's Baby 1968, andLocataire, La [The Tennant] 1976 are really good creepy movies, but Knife in Water just didn't do anything for me. Unfortunately you sometimes watch movies in the wrong kind of mind and they just go right by you. I'll have to watch it again some day to see if it was just my lack of interest of what.

It’s a “New high-definition digital transfer with restored image” as the cover claims, and it show’s. The1.33:1 aspect ration is great, optional English subtitles are available as Polish is the spoken language.

Mono 1.0 and I like the fact that Criterion don’t give films unsuitable soundtracks, but keep it like the original.

This two disc edition contains an interview with Polanski and his co-screenwriter Jerzy Skolimowski, a gallery of publicity and production stills, and a collection of eight short films Polanski made between 1957-1962,
Murder, Teeth Smile, Break Up the Dance, Two Men and a Wardrobe, The Lamp, When Angels Fall, The Fat and the Lean, and Mammals. But the most amusing detail about the edition is that Polanski himself translated the subtitles.

Being a Criterion disc you are never disappointed as they put down such painstaking and loving work into the restoration and preparation of their discs. They fill those little babies up with goodies and they are just great buys. Like I said I didn’t really get into the movie, but just writing about it sort of gets me in the mood to slot that disc back in the machine and see what passed me by.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...


-Nóż w wodzie (1961)

Leon Niemczyk

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