Italian Critics Praise "Ida"

Ida, photo courtesy of Solopan

Ida, a film directed by Paweł Pawlikowski and co-financed by the Polish Film Institute, received excellent reviews from Italian film critics. The film was released theatrically in Italy on March 13, 2014.

From Turin to Naples

Paweł Pawlikowski’s Ida started screening in Italian cinemas on March 13. Distribution in Italy is handled by Parthénos Distribuzione and Lucky Red. Ida is showing on 52 screens in Milan, Rome, Naples, Bologna, Ferrara, Parma, Trieste, Genoa, Turin, Florence, and Padua. The film has marked over 70,000 admissions to date, while also receiving excellent reviews from Italian film critics.

“One of the most moving works of recent times”

“In making Ida, Paweł Pawlikowski created one of the most moving cinematic works of recent times,” writes Andrea Chimento in a review for


Anna Maria Passetti of Il fatto quotidiano emphasizes that “Ida is a film about the search for individual and collective identity and offers an idea of cinema that is rarely seen today and is somewhat reminiscent of Dreyer, Tarkovsky, and the early works of Polański.”


According to Paolo D’Agostino of La Reppublica, Ida is “tense, powerful and intense. […] [The film] exudes a vintage scent of Eastern European ‘new cinema’ of the 1950s and 60s (the early works of Polański and Skolimowski, or possibly a development of Wajda’s marvelous Ashes and Diamonds).


Ida […] can soar over everything and reach the heart of the viewer,” writes Dario Zonta for L’unità.

Excellent Black and White Photography

According to Fabio Ferzetti of Il Messaggero, Ida features “surprising and inventive shots.” Alessandra Levantesi Kezich of La Stampa states that “the photography is based on the magnificent black&white of the first works of Polański.”


As Andrea Chimento writes: “Stunning black and white photography by Łukasz Żal and a carefully selected soundtrack studded with various classic motifs; this unity creates a staging of rare elegance, capable of exciting and moving audiences.”


“Consisting of perfect shots in timeless black&white, with dialogues distilled down to defining the narrative essence of pure cinema, Ida is a surprising, important film. A must-see,” writes Anna Maria Passetti.


In a review for Il corriere della sera, Paolo Merenghetti writes: “With a radical leap from the highly mobile camera and deliberately gritty style of his earlier films, Pawlikowski (along with cameraman Łukasz Żal and cinematographer Ryszard Lenczewski) places his two protagonists inside images of classic beauty, perfectly balanced in the unusual ‘square’ format that was used in the 1940s (1:1.33) – elegant but also cold and icy in complex black and white that also uses all possible shades of grey.”

A Portrait of Two Women

“Special mention goes to the character played by Agata Trzebuchowska who, as a first-time screen actress, gives added value to this film; a film that is impeccable in itself and will certainly still resonate,” writes Andrea Chimento.

According to Il sole 24 ore: “A big surprise of the new year is a Polish debutante, ripe for a career in the world of cinema: Agata Trzebuchowska.


Both leading performances were recognized by Alessandra Levantesi Kezich: “A film of flawless, formal beauty; strong in terms of subject matter and vibrating (with sublime leading performances) in a portrait of two women. Ida serves as proof of Paweł Pawlikowski’s talent […].”


Paulina Bez


Translated by Karolina Kołtun