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Operation Hyacinth

Country: Poland, Language: Polish, 106 mins

Original Title

Hiacynt
  • Director: Piotr Domalewski
  • Writer: Marcin Ciaston
  • Producer: Krystyna Kantor, Tomasz Morawski, Joanna Szymanska

CGiii Comment

First and foremost, technically speaking...the cinematography and lighting are absolutely stunning.

The same can't be said for the editing...when will editors learn that jump-cuts rarely work. When they do, they can be remarkable. When they don't, they always make a scene look ridiculous. And that's the only negative thing we have to say about Operation Hyacinth.

This is a dark and timely piece of filmmaking. Poland...is the homophobe of the European Union [there are a few others]...but, with their LGBT-free zones covering a third of the country, Poland grabs the headlines...for all the wrong reasons.

Yip, the European Union ain't doing what they are supposed to do...keeping members states within the equality ethos of the EU!

Operation Hyacinth is a dramatised piece of Poland's bleak history with the LGBT community...for a few years in the 80s, police targeted gay men, arrested and  officially documented them as homosexuals...Różowe kartoteki/Pink Card Index was the result. This index still exists!

Piotr Domalewski does not shy away from some difficult subjects...internalised homophobia, police corruption, ambition and tradition.

There really is no respite, the pace is fast...the reality, horrific. This is immersive and bleak filmmaking at its very best. It's is both evocative and provocative...by looking at Poland's past...highlights how little has changed since their iron curtain fell. They were then swaddled by the European Union...but, their leaders [still] play by their own rules...and, when you see how the 'leaders' conduct themselves in this film...the horror is obvious and could be imminent [again]!

A difficult and astonishing film.


Trailer...

The(ir) Blurb...

A criminal story set in the 1980s. Robert, a young policeman "out of principle", finds a serial gay killer. In the course of the investigation, he meets Arek. She decides to use him as an informant, not realizing how much this relationship will affect not only his work, but also his personal life.

Cast & Characters

Tomasz Zietek (as Robert)
Hubert Milkowski (as Arek)
Marek Kalita (as Edward)
Adrianna Chlebicka (as Halinka)
Tomasz Schuchardt (as Wojtek)
Sebastian Stankiewicz (as Maciek)
Jacek Poniedzialek (as Dignitary)
Piotr Trojan (as Kamil)
Agnieszka Suchora (as Ewa)
Tomasz Wlosok (as Tadek)
Miroslaw Zbrojewicz (as Commander)
Andrzej Klak (as Agent with a scar)
Adam Cywka (as Professor Mettler)
Jakub Wieczorek (as Sleuth)
Filip Perkowski (as Taxi Driver)
Michal Pawlik (as Karol)
Michal Wierzbicki (as Pathologist)
Michal Balicki (as Constable)
Mateusz Korsak (as Tall man)
Slawomir Grzymkowski (as Intellectual)
Adrian Wajda (as Friend)
Piotr Miazga (as Paranoid)
Jakub Kotynski (as Intellectual)
Lukasz Lewandowski (as Four-eyes)
Antoni Salaj (as Friend)