films seen
average score
Alive and kicking


The Hourglass Sanatorium

Sanatorium pod Klepsydra
1973 / 124m - Poland
Mystery, Fantasy
The Hourglass Sanatorium poster

Polish classic that is booked as one of the weirdest films in its history. And it makes good on that promise, as it's a very colorful and confusing film that uses its mysterious and surreal setting to tackle some pretty dark themes. While it starts off pretty promising, I wasn't entirely convinced by the time the film had ended.

Read all

After a peculiar train ride, Jozéf arrives at a far off sanatorium to pay his dying father a visit. The reception is puzzling, but that's only a prelude to this mysterious place where time doesn't seem to behave as expected and where dreams, memories and fantasy all blend together to create one big, confusing experience.

The setting and cinematography are impressive, sadly the props and costumes come off a lot cheaper. Performances aren't that great either and the darker second half takes away some of the film's appeal. People with a soft spot for the weird and creative owe it to themselves to give this one a fair chance, others should tread carefully. Interesting, but not entirely successful.

The Saragossa Manuscript

Rekopis Znaleziony w Saragossie
1965 / 182m - Poland
The Saragossa Manuscript poster

A jolly and slightly odd adventure, but not committed enough to make for a pleasant 3-hour journey. It's a boon that the film isn't too solemn, but 180 minutes is quite the investment and I didn't care too much for the setting, not the somewhat barren presentation of its more frivolous elements.

Read all

Alfons is part of the Guard of the Spanish king. When he finds a book relating to his grandfather, Alfons finds himself in the middle of all kinds of fantastical stories. He meets up with a broad variety of characters, who all have their own story to tell, intertwining with Alfons' own legacy.

The premise is promising, but the film itself is a bit drying than I'd hoped. The performances and the story are quirky, the visuals and the score on the other hand are more mundane. It would've been nicer to get a more condensed version, but the film needs to cover a lot of ground and 180 minutes was just too long to hold my attention.