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Camera Buff

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Genre  Drama
Duration  
Language  Polish
8/10 IMDb

Director  Krzysztof Kieslowski
Music director  Krzysztof Knittel
Country  Poland
Camera Buff movie poster
Release date  16 November 1979 (1979-11-16) (Poland)
Writer  Krzysztof Kieslowski (scenario), Krzysztof Kieslowski (dialogue), Jerzy Stuhr (dialogue)
Initial release  November 16, 1979 (Warsaw)
Screenplay  Krzysztof Kieslowski, Jerzy Stuhr
Cast  Jerzy Stuhr (Filip Mosz), Malgorzata Zabkowska (Irka Mosz), Ewa Pokas (Anna Wlodarczyk), Stefan Czyzewski (Director), Jerzy Nowak (Stanislaw Osuch), Tadeusz Bradecki (Witek Jachowicz)
Similar movies  Related Krzysztof Kieslowski movies

A short film about kieslowski part 1 amator camera buff


Camera Buff (Polish: Amator, meaning "amateur") is a 1979 Polish drama film written and directed by Krzysztof Kieślowski and starring Jerzy Stuhr. The film is about a humble factory worker whose newfound hobby, amateur film, becomes an obsession, and transforms his modest and formerly contented life. Camera Buff won the Polish Film Festival Golden Lion Award and the FIPRESCI Prize and Golden Prize at the 11th Moscow International Film Festival, and the Berlin International Film Festival Otto Dibelius Film Award in 1980.

Contents

Camera Buff movie scenes

Plot

Camera Buff movie scenes

The film is set in the late 1970s in Wielice, People's Republic of Poland. Factory worker Filip Mosz (Jerzy Stuhr) is a nervous new father and a doting husband when he begins filming his daughter's first days with a newly acquired 8mm movie camera. He believes, as he tells his wife, that he now has everything he ever wanted since his youth as an orphan, but when the local Communist Party boss asks him to film an upcoming jubilee celebration of his plant, his fascination with the possibilities of film begins to transform his life.

Camera Buff movie scenes

When they see his edited short film of the conference/celebration, his superiors find his shot of a pigeon useless and his shots of several negotiators at a business meeting too probing. His boss suggests that Filip cut the shots of the entertainers being paid, the men going to the bathroom, and the business meeting. (He allows Filip to keep the pigeons as long as the shot of entertainers being paid is taken out.) He submits the film to a festival and gains third prize, effectively second prize because the festival did not award a first prize, feeling that no work was deserving. This includes Filip's work; however, he is given an award as an incentive to keep filming.

Camera Buff movie scenes

His responsibilities to his wife and daughter slip off his radar as his gaze fixes on Anna Wlodarczyk (a young, self-described "amatorka" who encourages Filip's filmmaking), various activities he films, and the world of cinephiles.

Camera Buff movie scenes

The Kraków TV station airs Filip's film about a dwarf who works at the factory and another one about the misallocated town renovation funds. Filip's boss gives him a talking: work on the new nursery school will have to stop because of his expose, and Stasio will lose his job.

Camera Buff movie scenes

After that, Filip gets the canister for his as-yet undeveloped new film about the brickyard, opens it and tosses the film out to be exposed to the light. Alone at home, his wife has left with their daughter, Filip now turns his 16mm camera on himself.

Analysis

Camera Buff movie scenes

Camera Buff explores censorship in Communist Poland and its repression of the individual's expression of his observations. Filip also confronts the consequences of a man who discovers new possibilities and finds his former world, which had been so fulfilling before he'd discovered filmmaking, rendered dull, old, and limited.

Camera Buff movie scenes

Krzysztof Kieślowski emphasizes the power of film through various scenes in Camera Buff. Filip's moviemaking allows his grieving friend to watch a short clip of his late mother waving from a window and of himself cheerfully driving a hearse and waving to the camera. When he films the story of a diminutive factory worker and then shows him the result, the worker is overcome with emotion by Filip's ability to give voice and an arc to an otherwise ordinary, unexceptional life. Filip finds that with its ability to create comes film's ability to destroy when he tries to air a film clip of his which aims to quietly expose Party corruption. The clip turns out to be misinformed and results in the dismissal of one of his supporters from his job, an unfortunate consequence of his uninformed reporting, the Party's secrecy, and Communist Poland's culture of censorship.

The film ends with Filip turning the camera on himself, realizing too late that all along he should have reflected on the consequences of his camera obsession on himself, his life, and his family.

Filming locations

  • Kraków, Malopolskie, Poland
  • Warsaw, Mazowieckie, Poland
  • Wytwórnia Filmów Fabularnych, Lódz, Lódzkie, Poland (studio)
  • Soundtrack

  • "Walc e-moll" (Frédéric Chopin) by Krystian Zimmermann
  • "Staropolskim obyczajem" (J. Odrowaz, A. Skorupka, W. Kruszynski) by Zofia & Zbigniew Framer
  • Critical response

    Camera Buff received mixed reviews. In his review in The New York Times, Vincent Canby argued that much of the film "means to be uproariously emotional, but the events we see seldom justify all the overwrought reactions. Mr. Kieślowski also appears to suggest that art—in this case movie making—must be a process by which the artist consumes the raw materials of his experience and then spits them out as finished art, leaving the people around him in the state of gnawed beef bones. This is a vast oversimplification of the creative process and is probably only applicable, really, to the second-rater." Canby noted, however, that the film was "exuberantly acted by a good cast headed by Mr. Stuhr."

    Polish director Krzysztof Zanussi (Director of the Lodz Film School when Kieslowski was his Deputy Director) explains that there was a period before the success of Camera Buff outside Poland when Kieślowski's work was considered inappropriate to travel internationally. Zanussi argues that Kieślowski's work always had universal appeal, and that the praise or scorn seemed, to him, to be arbitrary. For example, after Kieślowski gained acclaim for films he made in the West—The Double Life of Veronique and the Three Colors Trilogy—his earlier films that had been largely damned by western reviewers and critics were suddenly praised as a collective body.

    Awards and nominations

  • 1979 Polish Film Festival Golden Lion Award (Krzysztof Kieślowski) Won
  • 1979 Polish Film Festival Best Actor Award (Jerzy Stuhr) Won
  • 1979 Moscow International Film Festival FIPRESCI Prize (Krzysztof Kieślowski) Won
  • 1979 Moscow International Film Festival Golden Prize (Krzysztof Kieślowski) Won
  • 1980 Berlin International Film Festival Interfilm Award, Otto Dibelius Film Award (Krzysztof Kieślowski) Won
  • References

    Camera Buff Wikipedia
    Camera Buff IMDbCamera Buff Rotten TomatoesCamera Buff themoviedb.org


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