Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actor: Michal Zebrowski
Director: Marek Brodzki
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy
A great injustice
Piotr Konieczny | Katowice, Poland | 10/08/2005
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Andrzej Sapkowski is one of the most popular writers in Poland. He has been translated into many languages (but unfortunately not yet into English), and as a fan of fantasy literature I'd proudly put his 'Hexer' series next to the works of Raymond E. Feist, Glen Cook, George R.R. Martin or even master Tolkien himself.
However, the movie is as terrible as the books are wonderful. Sapkowski's comments were disregarded by the movie makers, and later he 'diswoned' the movie. The story was cut to pieces, mixed in almost a random order and spiced by idiotic twists from the movie directors. Special effects are on the lowest TROMA level. Music is hideous. The only redeeming thing is the leading actor, Michal Zebrowski, who at least looks and acts like Hexer Geralt. But while good, he is not oustanding, and definetly cannot save the movie.
If you can get a hold of the books it was based on, please do so. But stay away from this movie adaptation, it is twice as bad as you can imagine after my review."
A very entertaining Polish fantasy film
Richard J. Brzostek | New England, USA | 11/07/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Wiedzmin (The Hexer) is a Polish film based on the fantasy novels of Andrzej Sapkowski. The main character is Geralt, the White Wolf (as played by Michal Zebrowski, who also starred in "With Fire and Sword"/"Ogniem i Mieczem" and even played a short part in Polanski's "The Pianist") who slays monsters that harm people, but leaves the peaceful ones alone. The film contains several short adventures that lead up to a larger story.
Some people claim the film was not as good as the novels it was based on, but this is often the case with film adaptations. As far as I am concerned, the film was fairly entertaining. It was worlds better than "Dungeons & Dragons" (2000), but it was no "Lord of the Rings" (2002).
Directed by Marek Brodzki, Wiedzmin is 129 minutes in length. The film is spoken in Polish, with English subtitles. Wiedzmin was made in 2001 and I would say it is rated "R" by American standards. For swordfights, monsters, and dragons, Wiedzmin is a lot of fun."
A (Not So) Good Attempt at Adaptation
Eric L. Spitler | Ithaca, NY | 12/26/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"You know, you can always tell when you're watching an attempt at adapting a book or series of stories to film, because there's always a lot you can tell has been left out, and things that don't quite flow like they should. This is definitely true of Wiedzmin. Characters and scenes are introduced quickly and are never quite explained or developed due to time constraints. If this were an original film with no previous incarnations it would only rate two or three stars. But in the case of this movie, which is clearly based on several short stories that need not necessarily be seen in order, I get the impression that there is a lot of really great backstory involved that I'm not privy to. Instead of just feeling confused and irritated that I don't know what's going on, it makes me want to read the whole stories (which I ordered, but the English translation is months away, according to the delivery estimate!). I felt intrigued by the character of Geralt and his transient allies, so in this respect it was a good film. The effects were very bad for being made in 2001 compared to what we're used to in the US, but the gritty realism of the film somewhat made up for that. I also ordered the video game based on the character, so I look forward to that. I suppose the biggest criticism is that it leaves me wanting more, which I guess is not completely a bad thing, since there is more.
Edit: After having seen the entire 13-episode series from which this 'movie' was cut & paste, I have to downgrade it to 3 stars at best. There is a lot of source material from which to draw to make this a lot more understandable. The acting is still good, especially from Zebrowski (who would be a good choice for Geralt if a big-budget version of the Wiedzmin Saga were ever to be made), but the overall story arc, which encompasses nearly half the episodes, is not given nearly enough treatment. Many people who have read the stories upon which the series is based have lambasted this movie and series because of its departures from the books, but since I have yet to read them (although I have ordered 'The Last Wish' from a British publisher, rather than wait four months for the US edition), I think they stand alone as a decent story, though not great. Worth viewing to whet your appetite for Sapkowsi's stories, I guess."