Synopsis by Clarke Fountain
Friedrich, a cultured, aristocratic young officer in the German army forms a romantic relationship with Elzbieta, a Polish countess during the German occupation of Poland in World War II. His occupying unit has been stationed on her estate, and the relationship exists largely due to his persistence. Their relationship grows increasingly complex as, for instance, he attempts to save a local Jewish librarian from transportation to the death camps. He tries to find common ground with the Elzbieta based on their both being members of the aristocracy. For her part, the relationship enables her to benefit the anti-Nazi partisans. Neither one of them is entirely deceived, but they try to sustain the illusion that theirs is a pure romance for as long as possible. In an epilogue, Friedrich's daughter is interviewed, and her ignorance of the past is revealed as being both complete and self-sought. This film was made by Polish director Zanussi for German television along with his earlier (related) film, Haus der Frauen.
war, aristocracy, Nazism, officer, Polish [nationality], youth