Argentinian Lesson


Argentinian Lesson

July 19, 6 p.m. | tuBaza, Gdynia, Al. Zwycięstwa 291

Documentary film and meeting with the director

Moderation: Katarzyna Żelazek


Staroń-Film, Telewizja Polska 2011

Argentinian Lesson – a prize-winning documentary directed by a true virtuoso of cinematography, Wojciech Staroń – will be presented by the Emigration Museum in Gdynia as part of the monthly Emigration Station series.It tells a story of a nascent friendship and of two worlds that are very exotic to one another – that of a small boy from Poland, the director’s son, and of an eleven-year-old Marcia Majcher, who becomes Janek’s guide to the problems and passions of South America.Wojciech Staroń – cinematographer who won the Silver Bear Award in the Berlin international Film Festival, author of cinematography for Saviour Square [pol. “Plac Zbawiciela” – trans.], traveler and director – will join us for a meeting after the screening, which will be moderated by journalist Katarzyna Żelazek.The unique setting of the screening and the meeting is courtesy of tuBaza in the Kolibki Park, where we invite you to join the Emigration Museum in Gdynia on July 19 at 6 p.m.

Free entry

About the film:

In 1998 Wojciech Staroń directed Siberian Lesson – a documentary telling the story of a young teacher who arrives to Lake Baikal in order to teach the mother tongue to the descendants of Polish exiles.This material – produced on a 16mm film – turned into a story about love.Małgorzata started working with Wojciech as his sound editor.The image of joined hands from Siberian Lesson became the logo of their production company.

Years later – already married – they go to Argentina.For their seven-year-old son it is much more than just a meeting with a foreign language.Marcia Majcher – a little older friend of Polish descent – introduces Janek into the fascinating world of play, but also shows him something he hasn’t known – a bitter side of childhood that has been prematurely tainted with problems of adults.

Through the experiences of the young protagonists, Argentinian Lesson paints a vivid picture of the countryside and the dramatic lives of its people.It is a moving story about people facing their everyday struggles, yet it still manages to be an enthusiastic account, full of colors and life.

Staroń was successful in showing the specificity of the astonishing continent that South America proves to be to newcomers.”This snapshot of Argentina serves me as a vehicle to show the phenomenon of the people living there – not so much their folklore, more the state of their souls.The contrast between the cinematography and the sound aims to emphasize the atmosphere strangeness” – he said in his interview for Kino magazine (No. 5 of 2011).


2011, Cracow (Kraków FF – International Documentary Competition), Golden Horn
2011, Cracow (Kraków FF – National Competition), Chairman of Polish Filmmakers Association Award
2011, Cracow (Kraków FF – National Competition), Wojciech Staroń – Chairman of Polish Television Award for best cinematography
2011, Cracow (Kraków FF – National Competition), Cracow Students Jury Award for creative and personal approach to the formula of documentary film and for extraordinary visual sensitivity
2011, Cracow (Kraków FF – International Documentary Competition), Wojciech Staroń – Association of Creators of Feature Film Cinematography Award for cinematography in a documentary film
2011, Leipzig (Dok Leipzig)– Silver Dove in the International Documentary Competition
2011, Minks ( International Film Festival “Listapad”) – Prize for the best documentary
2011, Florence (International Documentary Film Festival „Festival dei Popoli”) Wojciech Staroń – Award to the Best Director
2011, Bydgoszcz (Plus Camerimage International Film Festival of the Art of Cinematography) Wojciech Staroń – Honorable Mention in Short Documentary Film Competition
2011, Guangzhou (International Documentary Film Festival) – Grand Prix
2012, Kiev (Docudays UA Documentary Film Festival) – Docu/Life Competition Award
2012, Vienna (Let’s CEE international Documentary Film Festival) – Grand Prix
2012, Skopje (Makedox Documentary Film Festival ) – Onion Award for the best international documentary film
2012, Padova (Detour Travel Film Festival) – Main Prize
2012, Chicago (Polish Film Festival in America)- Golden Teeth for the most interesting documentary film
2012, Montreal (Recontres Internationales du Documentaire de Montréal) – Best Medium-Length Film Award
2013, New York, (Cinema Eye Honors) Spotlight Award

Wojciech Staroń (born. 1973)

– cinematographer, director, traveler. Graduate of the Department of Cinematography of the Lodz Film School. Member of the Polish Film Academy and the European Film Academy.Expert of Polish Film Institute in 2014.Author of cinematography for several dozen films.Made his debut in feature film in 2004 as Second Unit Director for My Nikifor by Krzysztof Krauze.He continued to work with this director in the films Saviour Square and Papusza.Laureate of several dozen awards, among them the Silver Bear Award of the Berlin International Film Festival in 2011 ( for El Premio) and the Golden Frog of the 14th Camerimage International Film Festival of the Art of Cinematography (for Saviour Square).His film Argentinian Lesson earned him: Grand Prix of the International Competition of Kraków Film Festival in 2011, Grand Prix of the International Film Festival in Canton, Silver Dove of Dok Leipzig, Award to the Best Director of the International Documentary Film Festival in Florence and the prestigious New York Spotlight Award.


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