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Part of the Focus on Poland Strand

Wojtek Smarzowski

  • 18

  • 149 mins

  • 2016

  • Poland

  • Polish, Ukrainian, Russian, German, Yiddish

Michalina Łabacz, Arkadiusz Jakubik, Vasili Vasylyk, Adrian Zaremba, Iza Kuna, Jacek Braciak

  • Director of Photography: Piotr Sobociński jr.

  • Editor: Paweł Laskowski

  • Produced by: Dariusz Pietrykowski, Andrzej Połeć, Feliks Pastusiak

  • Music: Mikołaj Trzaska

  • Screenplay by: Wojtek Smarzowski

  • Sound Production: Jacek Hamela, Katarzyna Dzida-Hamela

Director Bio

Wojtek Smarzowski

Director Bio

Wojtek Smarzowski studied at the Department of Cinematography of the Film School in Lodz. He started his career directing music videos. He debuted as a feature film writer and director with The Earlobe in 1998. His directing credits include The Wedding (2004), The Dark House (2009) and The Rose (2011). His films won over close to 100 film festival awards.


Volhynia is both a name referring to a historic border region between Poland, Ukraine and Belarus, and a byword for a series of brutal massacres occurring between 1943-1945. Polish auteur Wojtek Smarzowski turns his misanthropic eye to this disorienting period of history, exploring the region’s chaotic descent into hell through the will to survive of a young Ukrainian farm girl. It makes for a chilling and graphically violent account of the ugly growth of nationalism.

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