Thursday, June 25, 2009

See it if you can

It took two years for Andrzei Wajda's brilliant film "Katyn" to open in Britain and then only for a couple of weeks in a few "artsy" cinemas. Nor has there been much publicity about it, almost as if our arts establishment did not really want people to see this work. I wonder why that is.

Could it be the shocking scenes where Nazi and Soviet officers greet each other in a friendly fashion before discussing what to do with the Polish officers the Red Army had, quite illegally rounded up? Could it be the sight of the red star on the engine that pulls those appalling cattle wagons in which the Polish officers are being taken to their last journey?

Could it be the sequence about post-war Poland where "liberation" means a new occupation and the truth cannot be spoken? Or could it be a fear that open discussions might raise the thorny question as to why the West, specifically the British and American governments, colluded for many years with the Stalinist lie?

I have a longer review on the New Culture Forum. You might like to read it but, if you can, go and see the film; find out what happened.

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