Thursday, 19 November 2009
A Short Film About Killing 
An expansion of the fifth episode of his legendary ten-part miniseries Decalogue, Polish master Krzysztof Kieslowski’s A Short Film About Killing is based on the Commandment “Thou Shalt Not Kill”. I have seen my fair share of disconcerting movies, but rarely one as incredibly dark or as immensely disturbing as this one. Like its companion piece A Short Film About Love, the movie's basic premise is simple – a young, mysterious and eerily psychotic drifter , for no apparent reason or provocation, brutally murders a middle-aged cab driver, and thus ends up getting sentenced to death and executed by the Polish state despite a valiant attempt by a young, idealistic and neophyte lawyer. The movie starts off with the shocking and deeply foreboding images of dead rats and a cat hanging by the neck – a brilliant yet subtle indication of the story ahead; thus, by the time we have been introduced to the three main players of the story, we know they are on a collision course (though not necessarily destructive). Kieslowski took a direct stance against capital punishment here. However, one doesn’t really have to endorse his strong socio-political views in order to appreciate the thematic relevance, artistic excellence and technical virtuosity of this powerful movie.
Director: Krzysztof Kieslowski
Genre: Drama/Psychological Drama/Crime Drama