SPUTNIK MANIA – Retroview by Jennifer Merin

Timed to celebrate the 50th anniversary of America’s moon landing, the Apollo 11 documentary reminds us that humans are capable of making miracles happen, but it also calls up memories of the fearsome USA vs USSR race to space. David Hoffman’s Sputnik Mania (2007) chronicles the space race rivalry in a way that still resonates today.

Read more

COLD WAR – Review by Diane Carson

Oppressive political policies often come most alive when embedded in strong personal stories. That’s the case in writer/director Pawel Pawlikowski’s Cold War. In 1949 Poland, three workers travel the countryside in a van collecting folk music on audiotape all in honor of the nation. A favored few singers and dancers will be chosen to represent their People’s culture.

Read more

COLD WAR – Review by Marietta Steinhart (Guest Post)

Four years after winning an Oscar for best-foreign-language film for Ida, author and director Pawel Pawlikowski has returned with three-time Oscar-nominated Cold War, a meticulously composed story of love shattered by the Iron Curtain, and temperaments. It will break your heart, but never mind: despair has never looked so gorgeous.

Read more

COLD WAR – Review by Martha K. Baker

Cold War is blurbed as a romance, but the title refers as much to the plot as to the political and temporal setting of Pawel Pawlikovski‘s haunting film. It begins in 1949, two years after a communist government came to power in the Polish People’s Republic. Ethnomusicologists are roaming the land, auditioning for people’s choruses to celebrate Poland.

Read more