Synopsis by Karl Williams
After stumbling creatively in the 1980s due to an exile from Poland because of his ties to solidarity, director Krzysztof Zanussi returned to form with this English-language drama. Lothaire Bluteau plays Stefan, a Polish music student who wakes from a dream with the notes of a song still ringing in his ears. Unable to identify the tune, Stefan becomes certain that it involves Henry Kesdi (Max Von Sydow), a great composer who abandoned his career 40 years ago when his first wife was murdered in the Holocaust. Stefan seeks Henry out in Copenhagen, where the irascible, ailing man lives with his long-suffering second wife Helena (Sarah Miles). Henry rejects Stefan, but in a magical realist touch, it's revealed that Stefan has mysterious healing powers, and Henry relents when the young student is able to ease his pain.
music-student, dream, music, composer, recluse, death, Holocaust, wife, health, suffering, friendship, healing