Polish Rainbow

Tomas Rafa
Poland 2023, 80’

7/06 Friday | 19:00 sala 5 HISTORIA
9/06 Sunday | 16:30 sala 5 HISTORIA

None of the films featured in the festival’s programme brought us as many dilemmas as “Polish Rainbow.” It is gruelling and difficult to watch, leaving viewers in total discomfort. Simultaneously, it is an important work of art, too important not to be shown to festival audiences. Even if it is hardly pleasurable, the author’s concern for visibility and resistance deserves respect. In a way, “Polish Rainbow” belongs to the world of art rather than the world of cinema. It is a work overflowing with meanings, suffocating, disturbing, and frightening, a political and critical work in the best sense of these words. The film’s author, a graduate of the legendary Kowalnia (the popular name of professor Grzegorz Kowalski’s Studio of Audiovisual Space at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw), is well versed in critical discourse. For several years he followed the emergence of Polish neofascism, the rise of homophobia, and the polarization of society that actually serves to control bodies and sexuality.

While making the film Rafa thrust himself into the centre of events: demonstrations, marches, speeches… The disturbing anxious style of filming, tight – almost too tight – frames allow the viewers to find themselves in the middle of the story, to be close to what’s happening – only do we really want that? Why might this film hurt and upset some of us? Perhaps because it depicts the world we would want to eradicate – the world we naively believed has already ceased to exist. We are screening this film in order to remind ourselves and everyone that the demons it depicts are still around us, exists hidden behind the facade of elections lost by the right and the neoliberal – oh so “tolerant” – world. We urge you to muster up the courage to watch this. If we lack courage, everything we love and believe in will simply perish, more easily and more quickly than we might think. Really.

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