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The Decalogue

5.0 2
Director: Krzysztof Kieslowski

Cast: Adrianna Biedrynska, Anna Polony, Daniel Olbrychski


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The Decalogue contains all ten made-for-Polish-television episodes of Krzysztof Kieslowski's masterwork on two double-sided DVDs. Each episode is a gem of meaning and introspection. The only supplemental material is that which is included on the DVD cases -- a one- paragraph summary of each episode and brief cast and crew credits. The video quality is perhaps just


The Decalogue contains all ten made-for-Polish-television episodes of Krzysztof Kieslowski's masterwork on two double-sided DVDs. Each episode is a gem of meaning and introspection. The only supplemental material is that which is included on the DVD cases -- a one- paragraph summary of each episode and brief cast and crew credits. The video quality is perhaps just under television broadcast quality, but that might be due to the age of the material. Specks and grain appear randomly and frequently but never hinder the impact of Kieslowski's opus. The audio is generally quite good. Most viewers will utilize the large, white subtitles when watching; they can't be turned off, as they are embedded in the transfer. No dubbed English soundtrack is available. It is nice to have the entire Decalogue available in one collection, though this edition does not include the expanded versions of two of the episodes, which Kieslowski released as feature films. All in all, this is a bare-bones version of The Decalogue, but it's stunning and essential nonetheless.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Chas Turner
One of cinema's towering achievements, Krzysztof Kieslowski's epic The Decalogue comprises ten one-hour films, each one set in and around a Warsaw housing complex. Originally produced for Polish television in 1988-89, each film is modern, moral meditations on one of the Ten Commandments. The interconnected, contemporary stories tackle the commandments in oblique but startling ways. The sixth commandment, "Thou shalt not kill," for example, unflinchingly scrutinizes two murders -- a strangling by a drifter and, in turn, his execution by the state. For The Decalogue, Kieslowski worked with scenarist Krzysztof Piesiewicz and composer Zbigniew Preisner, two brilliant collaborators who also contributed to several of his later, more widely released films (such as The Double Life of Veronique and his Red, White, and Blue trilogy). Full of the artist's humane vision, moral ambiguity, and dark, seemingly unforgiving irony, The Decalogue is a masterpiece that could change the way a viewer sees the world.
All Movie Guide - Lucia Bozzola
An ambitious, tour-de-force epic originally made for Polish television, Krzysztof Kieslowski's The Decalogue (1988) explores nothing less than the Ten Commandments. Written by agnostic Kieslowski and Christian Krzysztof Piesiewicz, each of the ten short films examines a commandment (without specifying which one) in terms of the moral quandaries faced by ordinary people in their daily lives. Setting all the stories in the same bleak Warsaw housing project, Kieslowski and Piesiewicz emphasize the universal yet mundane nature of the different conundrums, in an everyday world replete with coincidences, tragedies, and cosmic jokes. Although each film could stand alone, as in Kieslowski's subsequent Three Colors trilogy, they occasionally intersect in subtle ways that enhance the complex cohesion of the whole, along with the unifying use of washed-out colors and close-ups. Parts Five and Six were expanded and released theatrically as A Short Film About Killing (1987) and A Short Film About Love (1988); Part Nine features a predecessor to the Polish singer in Kieslowski's The Double Life of Veronique (1991). Considered Kieslowski's masterpiece by many critics, The Decalogue finally received its U.S. video release in 2000 after a decade of occasional screenings at film festivals and film societies.
Los Angeles Times - Kenneth Turan
One of the indisputably great accomplishments of modern filmmaking.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Image Entertainment
[Dolby Digital, monaural]

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Adrianna Biedrynska Anka
Anna Polony Ewa
Daniel Olbrychski Janusz
Ewa Blaszczyk Hanka
Grazyna Szapolowska Magda [6]
Henryk Baranowski Krzysztof
Jerzy Stuhr Jerzy
Krystyna Janda Dorota
Maria Koscialkowska Zofia
Miroslaw Baka Jacek [5]
Aleksander Bardini Consultant
Janusz Gajos Michal
Krzysztof Globisz Piotr [5]
Maja Barelkowska Majka
Maria Pakulnis Ewa
Olaf Lubaszenko Tomek [6]
Piotr Machalica Roman
Teresa Marczewska Elzbieta
Wojciech Klata Pavel
Zbigniew Zamachowski Artur
Artur Barcis Young Man,Man in sheepskin,Tram Driver
Henryk Bista Shopkeeper
Jan Tesarz Taxi Driver [5]
Joanna Szczepkowska Janusz's Wife
Maja Komorowska Irena
Olgierd Lukaszewicz Andrzej
Stefania Iwinska Godmother [6]
Wladyslaw Kowalski Stefan
Adam Hanuszkiewicz Professor
Boguslaw Linda Wojtek
Jan Jankowski Mariusz
Tadeusz Lomnicki Tailor
Bozena Dykiel Ticket Woman
Jolanta Pietek-Gorecka Ola
Krystyna Bigelmajer Actor
Krystyna Drochocka Aunt
Maciej Stuhr Piotrek
Maria Gladkowska Girl
Marian Opania Actor

Technical Credits
Krzysztof Kieslowski Director,Screenwriter
Ryszard Chutkowski Producer
Wieslawa Dembinska Sound/Sound Designer
Halina Dobrowolska Art Director
Malgorzata Jaworska Sound/Sound Designer
Krzysztof Piesiewicz Screenwriter
Zbigniew Preisner Score Composer
Ewa Smal Editor
Nikodem Wolk-Laniewski Sound/Sound Designer

Scene Index

Side #1 -- Decalogue I-III, Vol. 1
1. "What Is Death?" [10:19]
2. The Gift of Life [9:12]
3. A Colleague [4:17]
4. Thoughtful Words [3:55]
5. A Calculated Risk [5:30]
6. "Where Is Pavel?" [7:19]
7. The Unthinkable [10:43]
8. End Credits [1:53]
1. The Doctor [7:09]
2. Pulling Teeth [8:10]
3. The Hospital [6:00]
4. Dorota's Confession [9:11]
5. A Difficult Choice [12:31]
6. Final Prognosis [6:21]
7. The Reprise [5:37]
8. End Credits [1:34]
1. Christmas Eve [8:28]
2. A Cry for Help [9:24]
3. The Missing Husband [5:39]
4. A Stolen Car [4:20]
5. The Affair [14:01]
6. The Alcoholics Centre [3:34]
7. A Tender Lie [8:03]
8. End Credits [1:55]
Side #2 -- Decalogue IV-VI, Vol. 1
1. Two of a Kind [7:54]
2. The Letter [11:56]
3. Words From the Past [4:16]
4. A Straight Answer [12:28]
5. Jealousy [6:53]
6. The Impossible [4:43]
7. The Unknown [5:08]
8. End Credits [1:54]
1. Natural Laws [6:17]
2. The Search for Meaning [8:27]
3. Looking for Trouble [5:08]
4. A Trip to Mokotow [8:50]
5. Difficult Circumstances [5:22]
6. A Lawyer's Visit [13:06]
7. Just Punishment? [8:12]
8. End Credits [1:54]
1. Peeping Tomek [6:31]
2. The Gas Leak [5:50]
3. All Alone [4:16]
4. Getting Noticed [9:57]
5. A Cafe Caress [8:02]
6. Premature Love [14:15]
7. A Change of Heart [7:37]
8. End Credits [1:53]
Side #3 -- Decalogue VII & VIII, Vol. 2
1. Bitter Rivalry [4:33]
2. The Escape [8:56]
3. Father's Day [13:33]
4. Mother to Mother [6:36]
5. Second Thoughts [6:31]
6. Final Demands [4:55]
7. The Search [7:57]
8. End Credits [1:53]
1. A Simple Life [7:28]
2. An Ethical Problem [11:18]
3. Past Connections [4:24]
4. Noakowski Street [9:20]
5. The Whole Secret [10:10]
6. The Morning After [3:33]
7. The Tailor [5:59]
8. End Credits [1:53]
Side #4 -- Decalogue IX & X, Vol. 2
1. Never Again [10:16]
2. Other Options [8:46]
3. Finding Clues [5:10]
4. Secrets [6:09]
5. A Matter of Physics [6:07]
6. Out of the Closet [7:13]
7. Desperate Measures [12:30]
8. End Credits [1:41]
1. The Passion of the Deceased [9:27]
2. Three Zeppelins [12:02]
3. Austrian Rose Mercury [5:40]
4. Quite a Character [5:54]
5. A Humane Gesture [6:09]
6. Delicate Operations [8:42]
7. A New Series [7:36]
8. End Credits [1:34]

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Decalogue 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Movie_Fan_311 More than 1 year ago
Taken individually, or in Total, this is one of the most engrossing, thought producing Movies there is.

Each of the Decalogue's 10 Stories corresponds to one of the Biblical Commandments, not in a religious sense, but in terms of moral dilemmas that each invoke. You find yourself sympathetic to the plight of the characters, and wondering what you would do in similar situations.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just saw Decalogue part 9 and 10 at Lincoln Plaza Cinema in New York City. I was deeply touched by the story line. Everyday-people dramatic stories are transformed by Kieslowski into touching and emotional psychological studies. In Decalogue part 9 Kieslowski concentrates on the thin line between sex and love as well as on the issue of morality. In Decalogue part 10 vanity and greed are shown as a ''value'' that overtakes human desires even at such cost as human kidney. Each story is concluded with a moral. Higly recommended for everyone, but especially for the sophisticated viewer.