2.12.2022 - 4.12.2022 Events, Film

In the Neighborhood: The Films of Paweł Łoziński

December 2-4, 2022
Museum of the Moving Image
36-01 35th Ave
Queens, NY 11106

TICKETS at MoMI

Paweł Łoziński’s nonfiction films don’t merely observe; they lean forward, they inquire, they connect. Often it’s the director doing the asking and connecting, whether it’s with his Warsaw neighbors or his own father, the Oscar-nominated Polish master Marcel Łoziński. At other times there are proxies, as with the incisive therapist in You Have No Idea How Much I Love You, or subjects leading one another down revealing pathways of conversation in Chemo and Birthplace. These engagements, inquiries, and seemingly casual encounters are energized by the filmmaker’s formal rigor: defining compositional frameworks, adherence to conscribed locations, set durational parameters. Yet these films are anything but clinical or predetermined. His practice assumes limitations and imperfections that can be accepted, fought, or worked around—like how one might (and probably ought to) approach other humans, and much like how Łoziński himself treats the people in his films.  

His latest, The Balcony Movie, both exemplifies and distills his methods and tendencies after 30 years of filmmaking. Curious about the people who passed below his balcony in Warsaw, and intrigued by how a camera might encourage connections, he spent a year filming his encounters with neighbors and strangers. He’s not a voyeur, nor is he a street reporter with an agenda—he calls out to them, hoping they’ll stop and respond and share something about themselves. He never ventures beyond the balcony, which serves as both a barrier and catalyst for deeper connections. The film won the Grand Prix–Semaine de la Critique at the 2021 Locarno Film Festival and received its New York premiere at MoMI’s First Look Festival earlier this year. It is Academy Award–eligible in the feature documentary category. This weekend-long retrospective showcases eight of Łoziński’s nonfiction films, including his fascinating collaboration with Marcel, Father and Son, as well as his father’s How It’s Done(2006), all presented by the filmmaker in person.  


The Balcony Movie

The Balcony Movie
Friday, Dec 2, 2022 at 6:30pm ET
Location: Bartos Screening Room
With Paweł Łoziński in person
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Dir. Paweł Łoziński. 2021, 100 mins. In Polish with English subtitles. Filmed before the pandemic yet prescient about our collective craving for connection in isolation, Paweł Lozinski’s quietly revelatory documentary was shot entirely from his balcony in Warsaw. Elevated from the street and armed with just his camera and boom mic, Lozinski engages strangers and friends, old couples and young mothers, commuting workers and ex-convicts, in philosophical queries that evolve, over many months, into confessions, course corrections, and complicated relations, offering a cumulative portrait of the struggles and moods of the times while exemplifying the humanist curiosity and formalist rigor of the unseen director behind the camera. 

Birthplace + Sisters

Birthplace + Sisters
Saturday, Dec 3, 2022 at 1pm ET
Location: Bartos Screening Room
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Birthplace 
Dir. Paweł Łoziński. 1992, 47 mins. Lozinski’s first major work follows Henryk Greenberg, a Polish-born American who lost much of his family in the Holocaust, as he returns to the village of his childhood. Visiting locations where his father and younger brother were seized and subsequently murdered, Greenberg encounters former neighbors who claim to have little memory of what transpired. But soon their recollections come more easily. 

Preceded by  
Sisters  
Dir. Paweł Łoziński. 1999, 12 mins. Łoziński’s celebrated, delicate study of familial love centers on a single walk made by two elderly sisters inside their city– block’s courtyard. From envy to the need for control, Sisters celebrates love and companionship while remaining attentive to its pains. 

The Way It Is + The Ukrainian Cleaning Lady

The Way It Is + The Ukrainian Cleaning Lady
Saturday, Dec 3, 2022 at 2:30pm ET
Location: Bartos Screening Room
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The Way It Is 
Dir. Paweł Łoziński. 1999, 58 mins. In and around his own apartment in Warsaw, Łoziński explores a year in the lives of his neighbors, particularly Wiesio, a former caretaker who lives in a makeshift hovel next to the garbage disposal. He lives off a disability pension and makes ends meet by digging through the neighborhood disposals. Respectfully attentive and crafted with both affection and honesty, the film is an aching portrait of loneliness and of lives too often rendered invisible by changing times.    

Preceded by:
The Ukrainian Cleaning Lady 
Dir. Paweł Łoziński. 2002, 20 mins. This is an intimate portrait of the filmmaker’s own cleaning lady, a single mother who left her native Ukraine seeking a better life. She labors, sings, takes Polish lessons from Łozinski, for whom she consents to be filmed, radiating good humor, endurance, and unguarded melancholy. 

How It’s Done

How It’s Done
Saturday, Dec 3, 2022 at 4:15pm ET
Location: Bartos Screening Room
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Dir. Marcel Łoziński. 2006, 90 mins. Piotr Tymochowicz, a media advisor to some of Poland’s top politicians, thinks that anybody can be molded into a charismatic leader. To prove it, he puts out a call for neophyte applicants for political candidacy, and hundreds apply. He selects a small group for training, which Polish Master Lozinski follows for three years. The result is a dynamic, entertaining, and implicitly damning snapshot of opportunistic, all-too-familiar reductive populism in action.  

Chemo

Chemo
Sunday, Dec 4, 2022 at 1:00pm ET
Location: Bartos Screening Room
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Dir. Paweł Łoziński. 2009, 58 mins. Through a series of close-ups that anticipate Lozinski’s You Have No Idea How Much I Love You, Lozinski captures patients in an oncology clinic where they receive chemotherapy. The context and location engender profound reflections and wide-ranging conversation, each frame teeming with life, light, and humor.   

Father and Son

Father and Son
Sunday, Dec 4, 2022 at 2:30pm ET
Location: Bartos Screening Room
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Dir. Paweł Łoziński. 2013, 56 mins. Two acclaimed documentary filmmakers, Marcel and Paweł Łoziński, go on a road trip from Warsaw to Paris. For the father it’s a journey into the past, between two home cities; for the son it’s an attempt at connection, a critical review of their often difficult relationship. What had been planned as their first-ever collaborative film—both wield cameras during the trip—fell apart in the edit, resulting in two separate films utilizing the same footage. This searching, forgiving, and entertaining dual portrait is Paweł’s version.  

You Have No Idea How Much I Love You
Sunday, Dec 4, 2022 at 4:00pm ET
Location: Bartos Screening Room
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Dir. Paweł Łoziński. 2016, 80 mins. Lozinski’s unwaveringly intimate work documents a triangular psychotherapeutic encounter between a daughter, Hania; a mother, Ewa; and a therapist, Bogdan. Focused on one face at a time, mining every utterance for revelation, and every expression for what lurks behind the words, Lozinski witnesses resistance and progress, trauma and enduring love. 

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