April 8—15, 2024


The program of the first edition of Timeless Film Festival Warsaw has been unveiled!

8 festival days, 300 screenings, 140 feature films, and 80 shorts from 31 countries will make up the program of the first Timeless Film Festival Warsaw, which will run from April 8 – 15, 2024.

Kicking off the event on April 8, 2024, at 7:30 pm at the Warsaw Philharmonic, the festival will open with a screening of The Passion of Joan of Arc (dir. Carl Th. Dreyer, France 1929), accompanied by a symphony composed especially for the festival by Stefan Wesołowski and performed by the National Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir.

On April 9, the National Philharmonic will host a screening of Victor Sjöström’s masterpiece, The Phantom Carriage (Körkarlen, Sweden 1921), renowned for its visionary and disturbing images. This rare screening will be accompanied by live organ music performed by Swedish organist and sound artist Ellen Arkbro. This will be the first opportunity in decades to see a silent film with live organ music in Warsaw.

For the festival’s finale, on April 15 at 7:30 p.m., Paweł Mykietyn’s music from Jerzy Skolimowski’s film Eo will be performed at the Warsaw Philharmonic by Sinfonia Varsovia.

These three events are part of Cinema Concerts, which will also feature performances by Belgian composer Wim Mertens (film music concert), Japanese multi-instrumentalist Eiko Ishibashi, cellist Dobrawa Czocher, Dutch lute player and guitarist Jozef Van Wissem, as well as ensembles Małe Instrumenty and XYLOS.

The flagship and largest retrospective at the event is a review of the work of the visionary British cinema duo, Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger. Despite their oeuvre belonging to the strict canon of world cinema, they are not widely known in Poland, and their films are rarely accessible. The program features ten of the filmmakers’ most significant works, ranging from the insular The Edge of the World (UK, 1937), to the spectacular The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (UK, 1943), to the Archers’ crowning achievement, The Red Shoes (UK, 1948). The retrospective will be complemented by an exhibition of portrait photographs by Fred Daniels, the duo’s photographer and one of the pioneers of still photography. Curated by Nigel Arthur (BFI) and Eva Reeves, the exhibition will present dozens of works captured on Powell & Pressburger film sets, offering insight into the aesthetics and atmosphere of the mid-20th century cinema through film stills.

Timeless Film Festival Warsaw will also showcase films by the only female director working in male-dominated New Hollywood era, Elaine May. Her comedic genius is a discovery of the festival and provides a great opportunity to explore American cinema through a female perspective. We aim to balance the rough cinema of the 1970s with sumptuous spectacles straight from the master of costume cinema, Luchino Visconti, as the festival will feature all of historical films.

We are also pleased to highlight Polish cinema in the Timeless FFW program, offering a rich representation of domestic productions. Starting with a revisit of semi-modernist films by Stanisław Różewicz, through the works of Polish documentary filmmakers, and culminating in the Classic Territories: Polish Cinema, which will remind us of both iron classics and hidden gems that have remained on the fringes of history.

A twin section sure to appeal to cinephiles is Classic Territories: World Cinema. This unique and extremely rich review features 24 films from various corners of the world, often unjustly relegated often to the sidelines. Among them are such works as the revolutionary Brazilian film Pixote (1980) by Héctor Babenco, the thoroughly feminist A Question of Silence by Marleen Gorris (De stilte rond Christine M., Holland, 1982), the late New Wave masterpiece Mad Love by Jacques Rivette (L’Amour Fou, France, 1969), and the dreamlike Iranian film The Stranger and the Fog by Bahram Beyzai (Qaribé va Meh, Iran, 1974).

Two festival reviews are dedicated to the country of cherry blossom, Japan, where we will linger longer. On the one hand, Japan 1954: A Year of Miracles, which will present the fruits of the masterpiece-laden year of 1954, and on the other, The Land of Ghibli, a set of cult animations from the legendary Ghibli Studio.

The festival also honors the cinematic contributions of Wim Wenders, a film nomad whose works include the outstanding Paris, Texas (USA/Germany, 1984), and Wings of Desire (Der Himmel über Berlin, Germany 1987).

A similar artist, operating between worlds, is Piotr Kamler – an animation filmmaker known for crafting extraordinary miniatures in France, culminating in the feature film Chronopolis, a visionary and almost metaphysical project.

For enthusiasts of eccentric adventures and aesthetic journeys, we have curated sections that transcend conventional realism. Musicals Through the Decades will immerse you in technicolor worlds, while Midnight Classics, featuring classic nighttime screenings, will offer a worthy conclusion to each festival day.

​​For those who enjoy connecting the dots and discovering unobvious connections, we have prepared Double Features sets – films that engage with each other in different ways, often shedding light on the unorthodox history of cinema. This aspect can also be explored behind the scenes: as part of Documentaries on Cinema, we will present a collection featuring films-within-a-film.

The icing on the timeless cake is our Special Screenings section, where we celebrate round anniversaries, present unique finds, and offer you the chance to experience something extraordinary. So you’ll be able to once again have a debate over hamburgers with the characters of Pulp Fiction (dir. Quentin Tarantino, USA, 1994), witness The Afterlight (dir. Charlie Shackleton, UK, 2021), a film existing only on a single copy of film stock, or stomp your feet to the rhythm of Talking Heads’ immortal hits during a screening of Stop Making Sense (dir. Jonathan Demme, USA, 1984).

​​Timeless Film Festival Warsaw is dedicated to the memory of Professor Aleksander Jackiewicz – a film critic, theoretician, and historian whose insights and contributions to cinema have influenced generations of Polish cinephiles.

Festival passes are available for purchase until March 27, 2024, while single screening tickets will go on sale starting March 13, 2024.

Main partners of the festival: Gutek Film, New Horizons Association, Polish Film Institute (co-financing), City of Warsaw (co-financing), and the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage (co-financing)

Festival partners: Documentary and Feature Film Studios (WFDiF), National Film Archive – Audiovisual Institute (FINA), Warsaw Museum, SpoilerMaster, British Council, Goethe-Institut, French Institute, Embassy of the Netherlands in Poland, Korean Cultural Center, Czech Center, Slovak Institute, Avant Art Festival, Educational Film Studio (WFO)

Cinema Concerts partners: Grand Theater – National Opera, POLIN Museum, Embassy of Belgium – Representation of Flanders in Poland and the Baltic States, Warsaw Autumn – International Festival of Contemporary Music, Polish Music Information Center POLMIC

Media partners: TVN, RMF Classic, Polityka, Gazeta Wyborcza, Filmweb, ELLE, K MAG, Newonce, Stopklatka.

The festival is organized by the American Dream Foundation.