Black Realism

(Czarny Realism)
   The term applied to a group of approximately twenty documentary films made from 1955 to 1959, beginning with Jerzy Hoffman and Edward Skorzewski's Attention, Hooligans! (Uwaga, chuligani! 1955). In contrast to the socialist realist mode of representation, these documentary films portrayed the negative aspects of life, such as hooliganism, prostitution, and alcoholism, which were never mentioned in the previous era. Particularly well known are documentaries by Kazimierz Karabasz and Władysław Ślesicki, such as Where the Devil Says Good Night (Gdzie diabeł mówi dobranoc, 1957) and People from Nowhere (Ludzie z pustego obszaru, 1957). The title of the latter became a description of the criminal segment of life. Sometimes the term "Black Realism" is also used to describe a group of realistic, yet stylistically different, films belonging to the Polish School phenomenon, which were characterized by a dark ("noir") presentation of reality. These include Lost Feelings (Zagubione uczucia, 1957, Jerzy Zarzycki), Noose (1958, Wojciech J. Has), Damned Roads (1959, Czesław Petelski), and Sleepwalkers (Lunatycy, 1960, Bohdan Poręba), among others.
   Historical Dictionary of Polish Cinema by Marek Haltof

Guide to cinema. . 2011.

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