Review: ‘Let’s Make Ourselves a Grandchild’

Old school clashes with new school in Piotr Weresniak's "Let's Make Ourselves a Grandchild," as a wily old farming couple outwit both their offspring and a host of greedy capitalist interlopers. Popular local release solidifies Weresniak's position as a top helmer of comedy, but obvious themes and targets will curtail export paths to vid.

In what’s becoming a familiar satirical device for Polish cinema, old school clashes with new school in Piotr Weresniak’s “Let’s Make Ourselves a Grandchild,” as a wily old farming couple outwit both their materialistic offspring and a host of greedy capitalist interlopers. Popular local release solidifies Weresniak’s position as a top helmer of mainstream comedy, following up on his “Station” and “In Love,” but rather obvious themes and targets, as well as broad treatment, will curtail export paths to vid.

Tending to their multiacre farm surrounded on all sides by sprawling Warsaw high-rises, Maniek (vet thesp Andrzej Grabowski) and wife Gienka (Joanna Zolkowska) refuse all offers to sell to well-heeled companies. Their grown kids, Janek (Pawel Delag) and Zoska (Malgorzata Kozuchowska), try to live a fast-paced urban lifestyle on overdrawn credit. As superficial as their folks are salt-of-the-earth, the kids try to convince dad to sell, while crafty lawyer Mytnik (Zbigniew Zamachowski), repping a Greek oil tycoon with his sights on the farmland, wheedles his way into the family. Third-act complications nearly defy deciphering, while betraying script’s origins as a play.

Let's Make Ourselves a Grandchild

Poland

Production

A Studio Interfilm release (in Poland)/MGE release (in U.S.) of an MTL Maxfilm production. Produced by Tadeusz Lampka. Creative producer, Juliusz Machulski. Directed by Piotr Weresniak. Screenplay, Marka Rebacza, based on his play "Two Acres of Trouble."

Crew

Camera (WFDiF color), Arek Tomiak; editor, Milenia Fiedler; music, Romuald Lipko, Grzegorz Daron, Sebastian Krajewski; production designer, Anna Wunderlich; costume designer, Elzbieta Radke; sound (Dolby); assistant director, Rafal Rosa. Reviewed on videodisc, Los Angeles, April 30, 2004. (In Polish Film Festival, Santa Monica.) Running time: 83 MIN.

With

Andrzej Grabowski, Joanna Zolkowska, Malgorzata Kozuchowska, Zbigniew Zamachowski, Katarzyna Bujakiewicz, Pawel Delag, Bartlomiej Topa.
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