Travis and Matt welcome Jon Laubinger, host of fellow 25th Frame show Film, Baby, Film, to discuss The Scar, Kieślowski’s second feature-length film. The Scar was Kieślowski’s first feature film for theaters, as Personnel had been made for television. Although it was fairly well-received, including two awards at the Polish Film Festival, Kieślowski was extremely down on the film later in life, calling it “badly made.” It’s not uncommon for filmmakers to dismiss their early films – in Kubrick’s case, he actively tried to prevent Fear and Desire from ever being shown – and it’s not worth taking into account someone’s negative attitude about work made when they were much younger and, from their perspective, much less wise and experienced. Regardless of his own feelings for the movie, there’s plenty of value here for any Kieślowski fan, and the movie represents somewhat of a bridge between the director’s more documentary friendly aesthetic of his early narrative work and the magical realism of his later dramas.
We open by briefly discussing our relationship to Kieślowski’s films before diving into the movie, especially how Kieślowski presents his central protagonist, the film’s use of secrets, and its political intentions.
The Scar is currently only available on an OOP Kino DVD box and a DVD from Artificial Eye in the UK. It will be regularly available on the Criterion Channel when it launches in April. In light of this, our discussion begins spoiler free.