19 January 2004 | Zmajina
Living on the edge
"Fever" is an apt title for a film that does not hold back on passions and continues the streak of wild romanticism that could be seen in a dozen Polish films since the legendary "Ashes and Diamonds". The film's atmosphere is hard to describe, but imagine something in a Byron-meets-Kafka vein: idealistic and highly emotional characters crushed by an omnipresent and invisible dictatorship.
Hard-core anarchist, desperately enamored bomber, honest but naive peasant, happy-go-lucky hooligan... None of them is your standard fare good guy, but it is hard not to sympathize with their tragic destiny. Yes, there's tragedy and Central European gloom all over the place.
The most terrifying and symbolic sight of the film takes place after a hanging, when a platoon of soldiers starts stomping the ground where they have just buried the poor devil. Funeral march indeed. To drive the point home, a hooligan is continuously whistling that most famous funeral march of all, composed not so surprisingly by Chopin, another Pole.
What really surprises me is that I'm the first person writing a comment about this great movie. Polish film buffs, where have you gone?