Ashes and Diamonds (Criterion Collection)

Directed By: Andrzej Wajda Starring: Zbigniew Cybulski

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Product Overview

The tragic story of a polish resistance fighter who makes a terrible mistake: he assassinates the wrong man on the last day of WWII.


Studio Criterion Collection
SKU 210881591
UPC 715515046817
UPC 14 00715515046817
Format DVD
Release Date 6/16/2009
Theatrical Release
World War II
Editors Note
Note Andrzej Wajda's adaptation of Jerzy Andrzejewski classic novel comprises the third part of the director's World War II trilogy. Set in the immediate postwar era of 1945, the film stars Zbigniew Cybulski as Maciek Chelmicki, a gunman for the Polish underground. When he and another operative, Andrzej (Adam Pawlikowski), ambush a jeep in which the new Communist party secretary, Szczuka (Waclaw Zastrzezynski), is supposed to be arriving, they find that he was never in the jeep. Maciek's superiors in the underground order him to make another attempt on Szczuka's life, and both Maciek and his target end up checking into the same hotel. While waiting to take down his quarry, Maciek has a fling with a barmaid, Krystyna (Ewa Krzyzanowska), that makes him question his commitment to the cloak-and-dagger life of the underground. A party celebrating the liberation goes on in the ground floor convention room, ironic for Maciek, who knows that a new war is just beginning. At daybreak, he leaves the barmaid and goes to execute his orders. Widely regarded as the best of Wajda's early films, the powerful antiwar statement features extraordinary work by the short-lived Cybulski, often described as the Polish James Dean.
Total Film 4 stars out of 5 -- "The film's shot with austere beauty in black and white, yet its moral judgments are anything but simplistic." 07/01/2007 p.138
Sight and Sound "[I]t's canny, engrossing and ice-cool." 12/01/2011
Andrzej Wajda
Zbigniew Cybulski
Cast & Crew
Zbigniew Cybulski - Star
Ewa Krzyzanowska - Featured
Andrzej Wajda - Director
Technical Info
Original Release Date 1958
Catalog ID 016
UPC 00715515046817
Number of Discs 1
Running Time 103 minutes
Color B&W
DVD, English, Subtitled, Black & White
Product Attributes
Video Format DVD

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