Nothing in Michael, a young and successful Berlin lawyer, gives away his Polish roots. The sudden appearance of his father, who was long presumed dead, plunges Michael into an existential crisis. After his father leaves, Michael can’t return to his life as a German.
BEYOND WORDS is the fourth feature film by the multiple award-winning writer-director Urszula Antoniak (“Nothing Personal”, “Code Blue”, “Nude Area”). Shot in black and white, the highly atmospheric and multi-layered drama touches on the difficult subject of assimilation and identity. From the producers of Oscar® winning “Ida” (Best Foreign Language Film in 2015), it stars European Shooting Star Jakub GierszaA (“Spoor”, “The Lure”) and one of the most highly acclaimed Polish actors Andrzej Chyra (“Katyn”, “In The Name Of”, “Land of Oblivion”).
Michael and his boss and best friend Franz feel at home in Berlin’s hip restaurants, bars and clubs. There is seemingly no difference between them, but Michael, who emigrated from Poland after the death of his mother several years ago, still pays extra attention to his accent. Michael is thrown into turmoil when a run-down Polish bohemian shows up on his doorstep and claims to be his father. Father and son, two complete strangers spend a weekend together, torn between empathy, rejection and mistrust. As Michael’s roots catch up with him, a painful crisis seems inevitable...
– Press Clippings –
“For Antoniak, guiding compelling portrayals from her small cast proves just one of her successes; delving convincingly into terrain not often tackled from such a perspective, exploring the existential malaise of migrants, the allure of Berlin to former Communist nationals and the layers of racism in multicultural societies is another. As a craftsperson, her commanding eye is also on display in images strikingly composed to look at, and thematically probing in their obvious contrasts — as aided by Lennert Hillege’s lustrous monochrome lensing.”
“Antoniak’s intriguing black and white drama puts a unique spin on the European refugee theme.”
"In Beyond Words, the shots are attractive, the black & white is immensely beautiful. It's a story that requires patience, which you have to know how to take so it doesn't fall on deaf ears. It invites us to reflect deeply on the trajectory of today's Europe, combining solidarity and respect."
“Beyond Words is an outstanding oddity in the creative canon of the director behind Nude Area. […] A politically daring film that takes shape amid a mesmerizing interplay of light and shadow, it presents the hot topic of nationalism as a subjective construct that exceeds the limitations of language.”
“Beyond Words proves a nuanced drama about what it means to exist in a world that finds itself so connected and yet further apart than ever before.”
The Film Stage
Gdynia 42nd Polish Film Festival 2017: Best Cinematiography (Lennart Hillege); Best Sound (Miroslaw Makowski, Maciej Pwalowski, Jan Schermer); Golden Kangaroo Prize (Jakub Giesrzal)
|Year Of Production
|Country Of Origin
|Polish [OV],German [OV],English [ST],Spanish [ST]
Cast & Crew