The Seattle Polish Film Festival presents a special screening at SIFF Cinema of the movie The Wedding Day / Wesele (2021), directed by Wojtek Smarzowski and starring Robert Więckiewicz, Agata Kulesza, Andrzej Chyra and Arkadiusz Jakubik.
The movie takes on some fundamental issues related to the Polish national character and skeletons in the closet, both in the subject matter and in the symbolism. The Polish title Wesele is of course loaded, as it is the same as that of the famous 1904 play by Stanisław Wyspiański that touches on the same lofty issues and is an obligatory fare in Polish high schools; Andrzej Wajda directed a faithful version of the play in 1973 under the same title, too. If that’s not enough, Smarzowski directed another Wesele in 2004, as pessimistic as the original play. In the current remake, 2021 wedding scenes in Polish countryside are juxtaposed with scenes of Jewish tragedy unfolding 80 years earlier, in 1941, while Wyspiański’s symbolism is used to confront contemporary Poles with what it means to be Polish today.