Films: All Will Be Well

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All Will Be Well  {Wszystko Bedzie Dobrze}

All Will Be Well
Wszystko Bedzie Dobrze

Poland, 2007, 96 Minute Running Time
Genre/Subjects: Comedy, Drama, Foreign, Sports
Program: Contemporary World Cinema
Language: Polish English Subtitles

DIRECTOR: Tomasz Wiszniewski
Producer: Juliusz Machulski, Wojciech Danowski, (executive) Zebra Film Studio
Editor: Krzysztof Szpetmanski
Screenwriter: Rafal Szamburski, Robert Brutter, Tomasz Wiszniewski
Cinematographer: Jaroslaw Szoda
Principal Cast: Robert Wieckiewicz

For twelve-year-old Pawel (Adam Werstak), life in a blighted suburb on the Baltic holds scant promise. His father drank himself to death, his impoverished mother has terminal cancer, and his older brother is dull-witted. The boy has little to sustain him but naive optimism and a love of distance running. So when he sets out in the company of his alcoholic track coach, Andrzej (Robert Wieckiewicz), on a pilgrimage to a distant Catholic shrine, nothing less than a miracle will serve.

In All Will Be Well, Polish director Tomasz Wiszniewski puts a distinctly Eastern European spin on the traditional road movie, testing the faith of two wounded souls against a backdrop of grinding poverty and despair. With grace and delicacy, Wiszniewski explores the emotional bond between the pair and the moral compromises they each secretly make as their quest is followed by a TV crew—not to mention an inspector from the Board of Education.

No hearts and flowers strew the vivid script cowritten by the director, Robert Brutter, and Rafal Szamburski; though they address some eternal questions about belief in God and self in the face of the world’s cruelty, they’re no gauzy sentimentalists. Pawel and Andrzej’s journey ends not just with the dawning of maturity and the possibility of redemption but also with its share of tragic ironies. The great tradition of Polish filmmaking continues apace with this tender but tough-minded coming-of-age—at any age—story.

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