In Urszula Antoniak's new film Beyond Words, father and son -- two complete strangers -- spend a weekend together, torn between empathy, rejection and mistrust. As Michael’s roots catch up with him, a painful crisis seems inevitable.
Nothing in Michael, a young and successful Berlin lawyer, gives away his Polish roots. Michael is thrown into turmoil when a run-down Polish bohemian shows up on his doorstep and claims to be his father. The sudden appearance of his father, who was long presumed dead, plunges Michael into an existential crisis.
There is seemingly no difference between them. But Michael, who emigrated from Poland after the death of his mother several years ago, still pays extra attention to his accent. As Michael’s roots catch up with him, a painful crisis seems inevitable.
After his father leaves, Michael can’t return to his life as a German. Michael and his boss and best friend Franz feel at home in Berlin’s hip restaurants, bars and clubs.
Urszula Antoniak studied Film Production at the Polish Film Academy and Film Directing at the Netherlands Film and Television Academy. Her feature film Nothing Personal won six awards in Locarno, including the Silver Leopard for Best Debut Film and the FIPRESCI Prize. Antoniak’s second feature, Code Blue, was selected for Cannes’ Quinzaine des Realisateurs, and won two Golden Calves. Lead actress, Bien de Moor, won several international prizes for her role. Nude Area, Antoniak’s third feature, was nominated for the Golden Frog at Camerimage.
The children's film Life According to Nino (2014), which was written by Antoniak, won the prize for Best Children's Film at the Cinekid Film Festival in 2014 and at BUFF in Sweden in 2015. Beyond Words is Antoniak’s fourth feature film. Antoniak has recently been supported by the Netherlands Film Fund with a special grant for the development of international talent for the project Stranger.
Image Copyright: Urszula Antoniak and Opus Films. Used with permission.
With thanks to producer Josh Snethlage and Mixed Media Sound.
Thank you for reading this story...
More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all. But media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our only supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help.
If everyone who visits rabble and likes it chipped in a couple of dollars per month, our future would be much more secure and we could do much more: like the things our readers tell us they want to see more of: more staff reporters and more work to complete the upgrade of our website.
We’re asking if you could make a donation, right now, to set rabble on solid footing in 2017.