IDA…..the best work of cinema that I have seen this year.
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Ida is the story of a young woman who is soon going to take her vows to become a nun. We find her in her journey at a convent, a few weeks before the taking of these vows. At this time her superior tells her to go meet and spend some time with her only living relative, her aunt. This, the nun tells Ida, is important for her, for only once she was ready to leave everything worldly behind, would she be in a position to take her vows.
Reluctantly Ida sets off on this brief worldly journey. She visits her somewhat depressed, prone to drinking and smoking aunt, who is surprised to see her niece. They connect reminiscing over shared memories. They both decide to take a road trip to visit the family cemetery, once the aunt tells Ida that she was jewish. The film shot in black and white and passionately, poignantly follows them through their journey. The narrative is told with minimal dialogue and more through the exploration of Ida’s state of mind.
En route they decide to give a young musician a ride to the next town, who in turn invites them to his concert in the same town. The young artist is completely taken by Ida and her presence and confesses to Ida the impact she has on him.
After the visit at the family graves is done, Ida and the aunt head back to the convent so that Ida can continue with her life of devotion and spiritual practise. Now that Ida is back, so is doubtful and wants to go back.
A story told through a simple narrative, a few characters and a profound sensibility that explores the meaning of life and what decisions we make; this is Ida.
Polish filmmaker Pawel Pawlikowski does brilliant work and Agata Trzebuchowska’s portrayal of Ida is top notch.
This is a must see for its very poignant expression of life and the life path we decide to follow.