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Katyn

Andrzej Chyra , Maja Ostaszewska , Andrzej Wajda    Unrated   DVD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 26.99 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Academy Award Nominee for Best Foreign Language Film Winner of the European Film Awards Prix d'Excellence The critically-acclaimed film from Poland's greatest living director, Andrzej Wajda 1940. After Germany's invasion of Poland, Joseph Stalin ordered the liquidation of the Polish officer corps, slaughtering nearly 22,000 men in Katyn Forest. Based on this horrific, historical event, Katyn tells the affecting story of four fictional officers and their families as they struggle to uncover the truth. Based on the novel "Post Mortem" by Andrzej Mularczyk. OVER 80 MINUTES OF BONUS FEATURES: Interview with Andrzej Wajda "Katyn: 60 Days on the Set" making-of featurette

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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
If the Poles didn't have it bad enough by having by having nearly the entire German army blitzkrieg it's Western border on September 1, 1939, the Soviet army then invaded from the East sixteen days later. Katyn presents a history lesson that most people never heard about: the mass murder of tens of thousands of Polish officers by the Russians in 1940. While watching this film you may wonder if the Russians mistreated Poland worse than the Germans did during World War II (which is a debate in itself).

The Germans found the massacre site in 1943 and announced it to the Poles, hoping to use it for propaganda against Russia. The Russians denied the accusation and then staged it to appear the Germans were behind the butchery. Katyn doesn't tell the story in a chronological way, but we see it unfold slowly; we see both the men at war and the women at home who love them. The wives, mothers and daughters of the Polish officers spend so much time waiting and wondering what happened to them. Even when the war ends the problems of the war do not - they spill into the decades that follow.

Andrzej Wajda is Poland's best-known director and has been making films for over fifty years. I think it is great Wajda is still making films because his recent work is opening the door to younger audiences who primarily watch contemporary movies. He has long ago established himself as being a brilliant director and Katyn reflects his years of experience and talent.

Katyn is a story that is strongly based on history and is the first film about the Soviet massacre of nearly 22,000 Polish officers. I viewed Katyn with someone who lived through this time and he confirmed that even the smallest details were right on and the way it is presented is how it was. It is a tragic story that was not allowed to be told earlier because of suppressed truth and political pressure. This is a movie is not just for people that like historical dramas, but is one that everyone should watch.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Devastating History With No Relief Sept. 21 2009
By Martin A Hogan TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
World War II stories seem to never end, but "Katyn" is a new and extremely important part of world history. Directed by Oscar winning director Andrzeg Wajda, this two-hour masterpiece is a witness to courage and tragedy at their extremes.

In 1939, Poland occupants are surrounded by the Germans to the west and the Russians to the east. This is an inescapable situation for the Poles. There are several families situations that are weaved throughout this film with wife's and daughters searching for their Polish officer husbands, brothers, relatives and friends. This sets the tone of the film, and personalizes it. First a wife and daughter find their Polish officer husband as they flee the Germans, only to see him disappear. A University is visited and the professors are asked to meet with the Russians; a fatal mistake but unavoidable. Officers and intellectuals are held at various camps, waiting to be executed.

In 1940, the Russians murder most of the Polish officers, while letters, rumors and messages are spread from camps to families and back. It is painful to watch. The Germans exploit Russia's murderous rampage to gain allies. Meanwhile, Polish residents are forced to sign allegiance to Russia, but there is a resistance, which is eventually fatal for most. Director Andrzej Wajda weaves real footage of the discovery of mass graves to the Polish people (actors) in town squares. (The films are authentic and Wajda splices them perfectly from black and white into the color film). These films are the most horrific one will see, even in documentaries. Polish officers are shown being systematically executed in the most egregious style. This is interweaved with families contemplating what happened or actually finding out the demise of their husbands and sons. It is heartbreaking.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Katyn Oct. 31 2012
By Mauserl
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is a very heart wrenching account what the Polish people went through. Finally, it is shown in black and white that it was not the Germans who killed these many thousands of Polish officers, but the Russians. What is even more appalling that Roosevelt knew about the truth but did nothing; he hid the truth from the world until it came out 50 years later when the Russian government apologized to Poland for the killing of these officers. The film maker certainly disserved the Oscar honors, amalgamating old news clips with a personal story what might have happened to real families. An excellent DVD that should be shown in every history class.
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