The Mighty Angel
The Mighty Angel
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Jerzy is a writer and a chronic alcoholic. We meet him at the point when he believes that he can beat his addiction. Him and her in bed. Somebody says "I love you". It seems that there is a reason and someone to live for... But when once she's gone and he's alone in a taxi, Jerzy can't stop himself any longer. He has a quick one at The Mighty Angel and then goes to an all-night shop and starts drinking heavily. And then foam, convulsions, vomiting. Jerzy ends up in intensive care. We meet the hospital staff and other alcoholics in the isolated ward. Part of the treatment is reading previously written stories from the times when the patients were drinking. There's an array of characters here: a lorry driver, a director, a pharmacist, some dossers too, a student and a policeman... there are no exceptions because anyone can be trapped in addiction. There are many amusing and authentic life stories (who has never laughed at a drunkard?) but there are also some terrifying ones...—Producer's materials
Uploaded by: FREEMAN
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Definitely not Hollywood
When Hollywood sets out to portray alcoholics, you get something sanitary like "Days of Wine and Roses" or happy endings like "Arthur". This is European realism and you get to see all the puke, soiled underwear, bar fights and street urination of real alcoholics. I don't know if the actors have alcohol problems in real life but each one is perfect in telling their story and how low "the mighty angel" has brought them in life. Robert Wieckiewicz is particularly perfect as a ruined Jerzy. Compare his performance to a half-smiling Jack Lemmon (Days of Wine and Roses) or the women alcoholics to cutsie-poo Lee Remick (also Days of Wine and Roses).
And what better country to make a movie on alcoholism than Poland? During the Soviet era in Poland, one of the few commercial successes was Palmos (the state liquor monopoly). Although the Soviets are long gone, alcoholism still persists in present day Poland. It will take a long time for Polish society to grapple with the problem. Let us hope this movie takes the glamor out of the bottle for the Polish people. I think that is what the end of the movie symbolizes. We see Jerzy just out of rehab standing in the middle of a street equidistant from a bar, liquor store and the safety of his apartment. Just like present day Poland.
Realistic and tough
I just watched this move today. Like all movies directed by Smarzowski this is not Hollywood-like story. A story about real problem in our life - alcohol. If you ever get wasted, if you ever had hangover and if you ever had black out or hunger for drinking another shot - you would not be satisfied after watching it. It is not a romantic story about drinking problems like "When a Man Loves a Woman". It is funny at first but then you realize that you might behave the same when you drunk - then it's not funny any more. No-one laughed at the end of this movie. My wife even wanted to leave cinema without watching it till the end. But don't get me wrong- it's a great movie. It's comparable to "Requiem For A Dream" but without such great music. That's why I gave it a nine.