“The Dybbuk” by M. Waszynski & “The Prince and the Dybbuk” by P. Rosolowski & E. Niewiera
Wednesday, January 10, 2018
Walter Reade Theater
165 W 65th St, New York, NY
The Prince and the Dybbuk
directed by Piotr Rosolowski & Elwira Niewiera
Wednesday, January 10, 2:45 PM
Thursday, January 11, 9:00 PM
directed by Michal Waszynski
Sunday, January 14, 1:00 PM
Wednesday, January 17, 8:45 PM
Who was Moshe Waks, son of a poor Jewish blacksmith from Ukraine, who died as Prince Michal Waszynski in Italy? Was he a golden boy of cinema, a cunning fraud or a man who couldn’t tell the difference between the illusion of film and reality?
As a director and Hollywood producer, Waszynski made over 40 films and worked with major movie stars including Sophia Loren, Claudia Cardinale and Orson Welles. His true preoccupation, though, was his 1937 film The Dybbuk or Between Two Worlds. Based on an old Jewish legend, it is the story of a young woman haunted by the spirit (dybbuk in Yiddish) of her first love. Not only is it one of the most important and mystical Yiddish films ever made, The Dybbuk also mirrors Waszynski’s personal life as a restless man with many secrets and untold stories. As he grew older, the idea of unrequited love and spiritual possession took on a more and more prominent role for him.
In The Prince and the Dybbuk, directors Elwira Niewiera and Piotr Rosolowski (Domino Effect) trace Waszynski’s footsteps from Poland, Ukraine and the US into Italy, Israel and Spain, taking us on a cinematic journey into the life of a human chameleon, constantly changing names, religion, titles and countries to write his own life story as if it were a film.
The Dybbuk: Filmed just before the outbreak of WWII, The Dybbuk weaves a mystical story of the Hasidic shtetls of the late 19th century with the story of two close friends, Sender and Nisn, who vow their first-born children will marry each other. But when Sender reneges on the vow to marry his daughter to a wealthier man, the spirit of Nisn’s son arrives to haunt Lea’s wedding. A rich, ethnographic tapestry of Jewish legend, The Dybbuk, based on S. Ansky’s seminal Yiddish play, is one of the finest films ever produced in the Yiddish language, presented here in a brand-new restoration.
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