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Knife in the Water (1962) - movie overview

Knife in the Water (1962)

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Plot Description

Original title:

DVD Release Date
• R1: Sep 30, 2003

Running Time
1 hour, 34 minutes

Country Poland

Studio Kamera Film Unit

More info on

Other Titles
• Knife in the Water (1963)

• Messer im Wasser (1962)
• Das Messer im Wasser (1962)

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Genre: Drama, Suspense, Love Triangle, Marriage, Infidelity, Psychodrama, Satire, Murder

Plot: Roman Polanski's first feature-length film is a suspenseful three-person chamber drama reminiscent of the work of Ingmar Bergman. KNIFE IN THE WATER was filmed in the director's native Poland and financed through government subsidies. Although denounced by local authorities as devoid of any significant social or political content, the film caused a minor sensation in the West, was nominated for an Academy Award as Best Foreign Film, and even made the cover of Time magazine. The action takes place almost entirely within the confined setting of a sailboat owned by a wealthy journalist (Leon Niemczyk) and his much younger wife (Jolanta Umecka). On their way to the lake for a weekend of sailing, they are accosted by a young hitchhiker (Zygmunt Malanowicz) who jumps in front of their car, forcing them to stop. Annoyed by the youth's daredevil posturing, the journalist nevertheless decides to invite him to join the couple on their boat, initiating a series of playfully competitive games between the two men. Playfulness soon gives way to hostility, however, as each tries to outshine and humiliate the other in front of the woman, who appears to be taking a more than casual interest in her husband's young rival.

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 Directed by
Roman Polanski
The Pianist, The Ninth Gate, Rosemary's Baby
 Written by
Roman Polanski
Bateau sur l'herbe, Le, The Pianist, Chinatown
Jakub Goldberg
Dwaj ludzie z szafa
Roman Polanski
Chinatown, The Fearless Vampire Killers, Repulsion
Leon Niemczyk
Rekopis znaleziony w Saragossie, Chlopaki nie placza, Poranek kojota
 Music By
Krzysztof Komeda
Rosemary's Baby, The Fearless Vampire Killers, Cul-de-sac

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