Dorota Kedzierzawska – Wrony (1994)


A kidnapped happiness
In Wrony (Crows, 1994), the central place is given once again to a little girl, this time set against the background of a small town. It also is a film about love, but this time about the absence of it. Wrona, the skinny and mouthy girl of a fragile build with a face of both an innocent and a scamp, kidnaps another little girl (Maleństwo) from the neighbourhood. She does so in order to find someone to love and to be loved herself.

The choice of characters and actors is also symptomatic. The girls (Mała and Wrona) are of a dainty build with revealing sings of forthcoming beauty in contrast to their blunt loutish behaviour. The choice of the young actress (Karolina Ostrożna) in Wrony is almost anecdotal. After several unsuccessful auditions, Kędzierzawska eventually spotted a girl playing in the street, ambitiously trying to score points in a game and failing, generously swearing about her bad fortune. She chose this small, impudent girl, with a spark in her character, rude, unruly and with no “civilised” cover—the layer forced upon children by adults and society. “Children are so open,” says the director, and it is apparent that they are perfect medium to reveal the true picture of human essence.
Kędzierzawskais interested in a search for the intimate, hidden corners of the psyche, lying under a surface that can form an unpleasant, disturbing yet intriguing picture. She engages the audience with secretive, brusque but brave girls and takes these girls as a starting point for an investigation into the inner, rich world of their characters, unexplored by and unknown to adults.
Kędzierzawska’s representation of children can be interpreted in different ways. The children can be read as “fragile little beings” rather than little people with little problems, as is the case in many films about children. Their problems manifest themselves, quintessentially, on a large and unsolvable scale and are of the kind usually associated with the typical adolescent’s life: solitude, desire for loveand a lack of a place in the world. However, we do not pity Wrona as a child only, but as a human being like ourselves with no part in anybody’s life. Hence the reference to crows—hovering aimlessly in the air above.
Traditionally, the representation of young girls in films is as daughters or lovers—exciting objects which evoke the first sexual fascination for boys in their youth. For Kędzierzawska, however,a young girl is a friend—and also a wronged entity.

Language: Polish
Subtitles: English (.srt)

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