The movie has its premiere at Venice Film Festival on September 9. The story is set in Poland in 1983, when the country is shaken by the case of Grzegorz Przemyk, a high school student beaten to death by militia. Based on true events, the film follows the story of Jurek, the only witness of the beating, who overnight became the number one enemy of the state. The oppressive regime used its whole apparatus – the secret service, militia, the media and the courts – to squeeze Jurek and other people close to the case, including his parents and Przemyk’s mother, Barbara.
Leszek Bodzak and Aneta Cebula-Hickinbotham produced the pic. New Europe Film Sales is handling world rights.
Here’s the trailer:
Ewa Puszczyńska, chair of the Polish Oscar Commission, explained: “As a result of the conversation about all the submitted films, the Commission focused on two titles: Leave No Traces directed by Jan Matuszyński and Hyacinth directed by Piotr Domalewski. The decision was not easy. Both films deal with the universal problem of the state’s oppression against the citizen, civic opposition, and the fight for truth and justice. Both films are emotionally engaging. In the end, the Commission decided that the Polish Oscar candidate this year is the film by Jan Matuszyński Leave No Traces.”
Poland has had a film nominated in two of the last three International Oscar races (Cold War and Corpus Christi). Last year’s prize went to Another Round from Denmark.
Here’s a running chart of the 2022 Oscar submissions in the category: