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‘Someone must have slandered Josef K., for one morning, without having done anything truly wrong, he was arrested.’ These are the legendary opening lines of Franz Kafka’s The Trial (1925). Polish director Krystian Lupa – Krzysztof Warlikowski’s mentor, among others – makes a cinematic performance based on this oppressive novel and Kafka’s letters and diaries. He does so at a time when Poland’s ultra-conservative government is causing kafkaesque situations in the country. On what grounds was Josef K. arrested? Is he guilty? At a certain point he no longer knows himself. With video, a large cast and his characteristic eye for humankind’s hypocrisy, Lupa shows the relevance of Kafka’s work.
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