Nóż w wodzie

Roman Polanski’s first feature Nóż w wodzie (Knife in the water in the english version) is a 1962 drama film. It is a model of economic, imaginative filmmaking. The story is simplicity itself: a couple destined for a yachting weekend pick up a hitch-hiker, and, during the apparently relaxing period of sport and rest, allegiances shift, frustrations bubble up to the surface, and dangerous emotional games are played. Like much of Polanski’s later work, it deals with humiliation, sexuality, aggression and absurdity; but what makes the film so satisfying is the tenderness and straightforward nature of his approach. With just three actors, a boat, and a huge expanse of water, he and scriptwriter Jerzy Skolimowski milk the situation for all its worth, heaping up the tension and ambiguities. The result was not just one of the most psychologically gripping films of its era, but also Poland’s first Oscar nominee. Knife in the Water has garnered acclaim from film critics since its release, and it is regarded by many as one of Polanski’s finest films.


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