Nothing is wasted in the austere Polish period piece, Ida. The story of a young nun, who days away from taking her vows learns that she is in fact a Jewish survivor of Nazi occupation, is told in gloriously bleak black and white, favoring minimal dialogue and narrative curves along the way. After hearing the news from her only living relative, Ida (doe-eyed Agata Trzebuchowska) begins a journey to look for evidence of her parents. Her aunt (Agata Kulesza) has spent her career as a Communist Party judge, and uses her influence and general ballbustitude to trace a couple of decades of lost (or buried) evidence about Ida’s past. Credit director Pawel Pawlikowski for creating what looks and sounds and feels very much like a movie of its era, with the jazz-pop sounds that emerged a few years later behind the Iron Curtain and that stark, unrefined monochromatic cinematography.
Director: Pawel Pawlikowski
Producer: Eric Abraham, Piotr Dzieciol, Ewa Puszczynska and Christian Husum
Cast: Agata Trzebuchowska, Agata Kulesza, Joanna Kulig, Dawid Ogrodnik and Adam Szyszkowski