section Break or continuity? "Anti-Zionism" and anti-Semitism under socialism and afterwards


  • Radosław Piwowarski
  • PL
  • 1989
  • 89

In a Polish provincial town at the end of the 1960s, local young people increasingly notice how the propaganda in the party newspaper differs from their everyday experiences. When the anti-Semitic campaigns also reach the provinces, politics immediately intrudes into their lives and forces them to make decisions of principle.

While protesting students in Warsaw are beaten up and the so-called “Zionists” are denounced as ringleaders, things seem to be quiet in the fictional provincial town of Lublim. Things are bubbling under the surface however - young reporter Tomek no longer wants to write propaganda articles for the school newspaper, the mysterious Ola is trying to escape her abusive father and Marcyś falls victim to the agitation that, also here, is driving Jews, her fellow citizens, into exile.

Piwowarski used the period of the democratic transition to convey long-suppressed historical facts to a broad, and above all youthful, audience. With a young ensemble of debut actors, he attempted to process personal experiences from his school days in a coming-of-age drama, presenting the complexity of the events of the time in the form of an enthralling story line complete with terse imagery. Typical themes of adolescence such as generational conflicts and love collide with a communist ideology that penetrates all parts of society.

Text: Rainer Mende
English: Peter Rickerby


original title MARCH CARESSES

international title MARCH CARESSES

german title MÄRZMANDELN

JFBB section Break or continuity? "Anti-Zionism" and anti-Semitism under socialism and afterwards

  • director Radosław Piwowarski

country/countries PL

year 1989

duration 89