“Ida,” a Polish film about a Catholic woman who discovers she is the Jewish child of Holocaust victims, won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
‘Ida’ has been shortlisted for the Oscars. The film about a nun’s secret Jewish roots is stunning, but some critics give it low marks for distorting Polish history.
The Israeli entry is out, but a Polish Holocaust-related film is still in the running, as movies from nine countries were shortlisted Friday in the Oscars race for best foreign-language film.
“Ida,” a fascinating and disquieting Polish language film written and directed by Pawel Pawlikowski, is a post-Soviet Polish rumination, a mystery with religious and political overtones. Pronounced as “Eeda,” Pawlikowski told me during our chat: “I needed a good name and remembered the Jewish Polish actress Ida Kaminska. It was a name I liked, but just a name.”
‘Ida’ depicts the end of innocence for a young Polish woman raised an orphan in a convent. It’s a poetic inquiry into the weight of history upon a single life.
Pawel Pawlikowski returns to the 1960s Poland of his childhood. The director explains why the film’s not overtly political, although it unfolds in the shadow of the Holocaust.
In his classic 1988 account of Hollywood’s Jewish roots, ‘“An Empire of Their Own,” Neal Gabler argued convincingly that Hollywood (and therefore, world cinema as we know it) would not exist today without the contributions of the Jewish pioneers and studio heads who first turned movies into our country’s great popular art form.