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The Border - Granica DVD
[dv442]
$19.95
by Richard J. Brzostek Date Added: Wednesday 11 January, 2012
Polish cinema in the 1930's had a sense of decency in which all the films did not have any vulgarity, nudity or grossness. Although these movies were appropriate for all ages, that is not to say they didn't touch on topics that would be considered scandalous even today. Take for instance the movie Granica (The Border), based on the novel by Zofia Nalkowska, which deals with a very dramatic and troubling issue that has a timeless quality. Although Joseph Lejtes directed this film in 1938 (there is also a 1978 remake directed by Jan Rybkowski), the events in the story seems more like a soap opera we saw on TV last week.

The story begins with Zenon Ziembiewicz (Jerzy Pichelski) returning home from his studies in Paris, looking forward to settling down. He quickly spots Elzbieta (Elzbieta Barszczewska), his love interest from the past. Elzbieta is very eager of his advances so it isn't much of a challenge capturing her heart. But the real problems start when Zenon returns to his family manor in the country. His flirting with a country girl named Justyna (Lena Zelichowska) gets out of hand and she falls in love with him. Zenon isn't doing himself any good when he leads them both on. He comes from a well-off family, but knows the best way to grow his wealth is to marry rich, so makes his choice for a wife easy - Elzbieta.

Although the story doesn't conclude with him choosing his bride and living happily ever after, as Justyna is very connected to Zenon's family so he isn't let off the hook easily. Zenon even makes a remark about others doing worse things more often and seemingly being unaffected by it. Zenon isn't so lucky, as his actions result in everyone suffering dearly.

The entire story is filled with twists and surprises. Although there are a lot of ways to interpret the events, it isn't too difficult to see this as a morality story. Doing harm to others, even in a simple way of leading someone on and being unfaithful, causes not only problems for those who were abused, but also for the one who committed the act.

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
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