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Doctoral Students' Film Club

Doctoral Students' Film Club

Once again, the Culture Commission of the Jagiellonian University's PhD Student Association invites you to vote on which film we will watch during the next edition of the Doctoral Students’ Film Club, which will take place on Thursday June 2nd. You can vote until Wednesday May 25th by clicking the following link:

This time, you can vote for the following films (the descriptions come from the distributors): 


Where Is Anne Frank (Polish dubbing), dir. Ari Folman, France/Netherlands/Belgium/Luxembourg, 2021 

The newest film by Ari Folman, director of the Oscar-nominated anti-war animation Waltz with Bashir (which is available to watch online at, is an equally zealous pacifist manifesto urging solidarity with the persecuted and addressed to our hearts. 

The visually stunning animated film Where Is Anne Frank was produced to bring together imagination and truth, traditional techniques and new technologies, the past and the future, and, above all, generations. An adaptation of Folman and David Polonsky’s graphic novel, which has also been published in Poland, this film will captivate children, parents, and anyone who appreciates wise animation. This is an exceptionally relevant story about the fact that everyone deserves respect and has the right to life, dignity, and a safe home. 

The starting point for Ari Folman's animation is, of course, Anne Frank's Diary of a Young Girl, one of the most important testimonies to the Holocaust. Anne, a thirteen-year-old Jewish girl hiding in Amsterdam, addressed her journal to her invisible friend Kitty. In Folman's film, Kitty steps off the pages of the book to find Anne in present-day Amsterdam. She discovers that although every other hospital, bridge, or school is name after the famed author of this wartime diary, the city is still filled with prejudices and people who have to hide. During her unusual journey across urban backstreets and the history of the Frank family, Kitty meets Peter, a boy who helps refugees. They share a common mission: to resurrect Anne Frank's spirit and stir up consciences. 

Ari Folman, the son of a Jewish immigrant from Poland who survived the Holocaust, returns to the topic of memory and trauma in his newest film. Where Is Anne Frank is a “zealous, moving, and visually stunning” animated film, as the Guardian's film critic has put it, and one that is perfectly timely. Its ultimate shape and message were influenced by the 2015 refugee crisis, which shattered the illusion that war, escape, and exclusion are experiences confined to museums and the pages of history textbooks. This is a deeply humanistic film and a summons to help the weak, tolerance, and solidarity with every person in need. 


The Duke, dir. Roger Mitchell, United Kingdom, 2020 (in English with Polish subtitles) 

A humorous and moving tale starring Oscar winners Jim Broadbent and Helen Mirren. 

Based on a mad but true story, this comedy tells the story of an ordinary Robin Hood-like man who ridiculed British authorities by brashly stealing a certain masterpiece for a noble cause. 

Great Britain is shocked by the news of an audacious robbery at the National Gallery. The police claim that a powerful international ring is responsible for the theft of a priceless portrait of the Duke of Wellington by the great Goya. When the modest taxi driver Kempton Bunton reads this news, he cannot but laugh, for the priceless painting is hidden in his own closet in his humble abode in Newcastle. Bunton loves his simple life, loves his wife and sons, but cannot stand any kind of injustice. In this regard, he is an incorrigable idealist, which frequently gets him into even greater trouble. The theft of this priceless painting is undoubtedly the greatest stunt he had pulled off, but the aim is always noble. In anonymous letters, Bunton suggests to the authorities that he returns the painting under the condition that it introduces certain benefits for the poor. When the police begin to suspect him, this Newcastle Robin Hood will have to face the British justice system and, what is worse, the wrath of his own wife. 


Natural Light, dir. Dénes Nagy, Hungary/France/Latvia/Germany, 2022 (in Hungarian and Russian with Polish subtitles) 

Dénes Nagy’s debut (for which he received the Silver Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival) is based on the famous novel by Pál Závada. Out of the twenty years that make up this sage, the Hungarian director limits himself to depicting just three days. However, this suffices to suggestively present the cruelty of war and the drama of people who are mere cogs in the war machine. 


Tamás Dobos’ majestic cinematography as well as the impressive sound editing make this film an incredible artistic experience. 

The film is set in 1943 amidst the inferno of the Second World War. After their defeat on the Don, 100,000 Hungarian soldiers, the allies of Nazi Germany, are deported to the vast territories of the Soviet empire in order to bring about order and crush the resistance of partisans in accordance with the ruthless tactic of “fighting banditry” (Bandenbekämpfung). 

They include Corporal Istvan Semetka (played by newcomer Ferenc Szabó) whose division treads across harsh, hostile territories to reach a small village and set up camp. Their relative calm is disrupted as a result of the ambush to which the soldiers fall prey. Consequently, the company's commander is killed. This event will leave a mark on the protagonist and make him bear the burden of responsibility for his comrades in arms, although this will have serious repercussions for the village’s inhabitants, especially as reinforcements bolstering the besieged division will soon arrive.