NR Digital

Into the Past

by Ross Douthat
A review of Ida

Ida, a small black-and-white masterpiece currently getting its American release, is set in Poland in the 1960s, and it feels as if it could have been filmed in the ’60s as well: It’s like finding a lost Bresson or Bergman in a time capsule, a missing link from the age of the auteur.

The director is Pawel Pawlikowski, a Pole who spent his childhood under Communism and then moved with his parents to the United Kingdom when he was a teenager. He has made his career to date in England, as an English-language filmmaker, so this is a homecoming, a return — a triumphant one for the director, built on the rather darker journey that his characters undertake.

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