Today: May 20, 2024

Andrzej Żuławski: Three Films 

Eureka’s Andrzej Żuławski: Three Films are a testament to the distributor’s commitment to great cinema.

Originally scheduled for release earlier this year, while moving into the final stages of production, new video extras were submitted to Andrzej Jaroszewicz (cinematographer on a number of Żuławski’s films) for review.

The Devil had been restored back in 2015, but was rejected by Żuławski as the colour grading was incorrectly applied. After Żuławski died in 2016, Jaroszewicz was brought in to oversee the new grading, which was completed that year.

However, Eureka discovered that at some point in the past seven years, the version of the film approved by Jaroszewicz had gone missing, so they have gone back to the original materials to do the re-do the grading, with Jaroszewicz again overseeing the project.

The result is truly impressive, making the work of one of European cinema’s most uncompromising and visionary mavericks available for a new generation to enjoy.

Rich with multi-layered symbolism and apocalyptic imagery, The Third Part Of The Night is Żuławski’s highly influential debut feature film. After his whole family is slaughtered during the Nazi-occupation of Poland, Michal (Leszek Teleszyński) decides to join the resistance but descends into madness after encountering a doppelgänger of his murdered wife.

The Devil is a violent tale of Satanic seduction during the Prussian invasion of Poland in the 17th century, which proved so controversial upon release that it was banned for 16 years and Żuławski was exiled.

On the back of the success of his next feature, That Most Important Thing: Love,Żuławski was invited back to Poland—apparently forgiven. However, while the authorities may have mellowed in their attitudes towards their errant son, Żuławski was far from chastened.

On The Silver Globe is Żuławski’s masterpiece about a team of astronauts who land on a desolate planet and start a new society. The film was based on The Lunar Trilogy, written by Żuławski’s great uncle Jerzy Żuławski. The bookis a critique of religion and utopian ideals—not at all the sort of thing that a deeply Catholic, communist country was likely to red light. Surprisingly, the film was almost 80 percent complete, when the Polish government ordered the production to be shut down and all the negatives be destroyed. Miraculously, the original film reels were preserved and Żuławski was able to complete his opus a few years later. Ten years on, the film was presented at the Cannes Film Festival to huge acclaim.

Żuławski’s films are powerful, disturbing, and visually striking. They offer the viewer much food for thought, alonside imagery that, 50 years on, still has the power to shock and awe.

Andrzej Żuławski: Three Films make their UK debut on blu-ray in a limited edition 4-disc set. Only 3000 copies will be issued, and these come with a fabulous array of extras, including:

  • Hardbound Slipcase.
  • All three films presented in 1080p HD on Blu-ray, using definitive digital restorations from 4K scans.
  • Original mono audio tracks. 
  • Optional English Subtitles for all films, from translations by Daniel Bird and approved by director Andrzej Żuławski before his death in 2016. 
  • Escape To The Silver Globe (dir. Kuba Mikurda, 2021) – UK debut of the acclaimed documentary on the production history of Silver Globe. 
  • Michael Brooke on The Third Part Of The Night + The Devil – two brand new interviews with film historian Michael Brooke. 
  • Lukasz Żulawski on The Devil – brand new interview.
  • Brand new audio commentary on Silver Globe by Daniel Bird.
  • Adam Żulawski on Jerzy Żulawski – brand new interview.
  • Return To Rhe Silver Globe – 2019 footage of cinematographer Andrzej Jaroszewicz revisiting the Polish salt mine used as a filming location for On the Silver Globe.
  • The Cinematography of On The Silver Globe – new documentary by Daniel Bird. Lunar Futurism – new documentary by Daniel Bird.
  • A limited edition 60-page collector’s book featuring The Enigmas Of Żulawski, a new essay by Philip Kemp.
  • Unidentified Film Object, Daniel Bird’s revised and edited notes for a presentation on the production history and restoration of On The Silver Globe.
  • A new essay by Andrew Graves.
  • A transcription from a 1979 samizdat journal criticising the official Polish coverage of On The Silver Globe.
  • An archival letter written by the crew of On The Silver Globe.

Paula Hammond - Features Editor

Paula Hammond is a full-time, freelance journalist. She regularly writes for more magazines than is healthy and has over 25 books to her credit. When not frantically scribbling, she can be found indulging her passions for film, theatre, cult TV, sci-fi and real ale. If you should spot her in the pub, after five rounds rapid, she’ll be the one in the corner mumbling Ghostbusters quotes and waiting for the transporter to lock on to her signal… Email: writerpaula@icloud.com

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