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Janusz is not a man to be easily shocked. As coroner he undertakes precise research, analysing the crime scene in minute detail. Despite the extreme situations he comes up against, he works hard. Perhaps too hard. Yet when faced with his anorexic daughter Olga, still grieving for her dead mother, he feels helpless. Fearing that she might kill herself, he commits her to a clinic where Anna, a psychologist, carries out her duties. Years before, Anna lost her baby to cot-death and now sequesters herself and her big dog in a heavily barricaded flat and conjures up spirits who communicate with the living from beyond the grave … Małgorzata Szumowska works with elements of black comedy to tell of the difficulties people encounter when struggling to cope with the loss of loved ones. The film explores the fear of and yet longing for intimacy, self-harm due to mental anguish and escaping into the esoteric. A complex meditation on the loneliness of the heart and the conflict between the rational and belief in a supernatural universe.
Meet the director
Małgorzata Szumowska was born in Kraków, Poland, in 1973. While studying directing at the State Academy of Film, Television and Theatre in Łódź, she met cinematographer, screenwriter, and producer Michał Englert, with whom she has collaborated on more than a dozen documentaries and feature films. These include the documentary short SILENCE (1997) and the feature films 33 SCENES FROM LIFE (2008), IN THE NAME OF (2013), BODY (2015), and MUG (2017), the last three of which received the awards for best feature film, best director, and the Jury Grand Prix, respectively, at the Berlinale. Szumowska’s first English-language feature film, THE OTHER LAMB (2019), was screened at the Toronto, San Sebastián and London festivals. She collaborated with Englert once more on NEVER GONNA SNOW AGAIN, which he co-directed.