The third and final volume of a momentous trilogy, following WITH FIRE AND SWORD and THE DELUGE. A monumental epic of battle, love, and betrayal. The Turks are invading Poland. Colonel Wolodyjowski strikes up a bargain w... more »ith some local rapscallions. They mount a final defense against the massive and extremely well-armed Turkish army. This film features some of the most incredible battle scenes ever filmed. This epic was also caught up in the events of its own time. Just before production, the Soviet army invaded Czechoslovakia, provoking worldwide outrage. The Communists pressed the filmmakers to make COLONEL WOLODYJOWSKI metaphorically rationalize this invasion. This pressure, and the filmmakers? resistance to it, carries over into the film: making it a volatile and dangerous work.« less
Ian S. Horst | Brooklyn, NY United States | 04/04/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Jerzy Hoffman's late 1960s epic "Pan Wolodyjowski" is the saga of the 17th-century Polish Republic fending off traitorous tatars and invading Ottoman turks. It harkens back to the time when an independent Poland extended well beyond its 20th-century borders and stood as the guardian gate of Europe.The film is enjoyable, with great battle scenes and costume drama, and a generally amusing subplot over tomboy princess Basia's attempts to woo and subdue the leading hero. Hunky Polish actor Daniel Obrychowski plays the film's chief bad guy who comes to a very bad end...who KNEW that was how impaling somebody was actually done. Anyway the film has some fascinating subtext leading me to wonder how this nationalistic, pro-Catholic film got by Poland's then-Soviet overlords: the implications of the film being something along the line that the Ukraine is really Poland and that Poland's eastern and southern borders are home to nasty barbarians who simply can't be trusted.The VHS transfer is a little dark at times, and every once in a while some choppy element in the storyline leads me to suspect some ruthless editing, but it's still a fine, rousing watch. The saga continues in POTOP, which is next on my own stack of tapes to watch."
Classic Historical Fiction of Sienkiewicz
Richard J. Brzostek | New England, USA | 12/12/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Pan Wolodyjowski" is Jerzy Hoffman's 1969 classic historical film, at the time of the Turkish invasion, in 1668. At this time, Poland controlled lands far beyond its current borders, but was under constant invasion by its neighbors. Some of the images of warfare and conquest in this film may send a shiver down your back.
After the death of his fiance, Pan Wolodyjowski, one of the greatest swordsmen of the time, enters a monastery. His friends sense the impending wars with the advance of the Turkish army and trick him into leaving before he takes his vows. Shortly thereafter, he falls in love with a woman, but she ends up falling for his Scottish friend Ketling. However, the third time is a charm, and Pan Wolodyjowski soon focuses his attention on another woman named Basia, whom he marries.
Pan Wolodyjowski is sent to a frontier region, where his troubles intensify. One of the nobles in that region took in a boy named Azja (as played by Daniel Olbrychski) he found in the steppe and raised him. Azja took a liking the nobleman's daughter when he was older and both were punished for their love of each other. Now bitter, Azja takes a liking to Basia and manipulates her in order to attempt to kidnap her. To make matters worse, Azja turns out to be the son of Tuhaj-Bej and could be the Kahn of the Crimea if he so desired. The traitorous tartars that served Poland follow the command of Azja and turn on the Polish nobles of the area, resulting in one of the saddest and most unfortunate scenes in the film.
However, more action is in sight, for the Turks reach the region and scale a major battle. With the Poles winning several small battles earlier, a long siege is in store for them with a less clear outcome.
This 147-minute film is based on the third novel in the historical fiction of Henryk Sienkiewicz. The other two novels, "Ogniem i Mieczem" and "Potop," have also been made into films by Jerzy Hoffman. Incidentally, Daniel Olbrychski also plays Tuhaj-Bej in the film " Ogniem i Mieczem " (1999), and also has a role in "Potop" (1974).
Pan Wolodyjowski, the wonder of a movie, watch it and enjoy!
Ian S. Horst | 03/13/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"A Historical Drama based on a book by Henryk Sienkiewicz, who also wrote 'Quo Vadis', for which he won the Nobel prize....if you are interested in European History, 17-th century tartars and mongolians. this is a love story about a Polish Colonel and a young beautiful noble girl. the movie was made from a televison series: 'Przygody Pana Michala'. the music is done by Wojcich Kilar (famous for creating music for other movies such as Dracula, the Ninth Gate, Portrait of a Lady, the Pianist, etc). The acting is superb by Tadeusz Lomnicki and magdalena Zawadzka, and who can forget Zagloba, the funny old man who is just so much fun to watch.another reason to see the movie is Hetman Jan Sobieski- the leader of the Polish soldiers (husars) who chased the Turks away from Vienna in 1683 and saved all of western Europe......it's an old movie from the 1960's but it has a lot to offer, you will love the horses galloping and the battle scenes.give it a chance and see this one of a kind movie! this movie is part of the trilogy: 'with fire and sword', 'potop' and 'pan Wolodyjowski'.........."
Poland has not yet perished as long as we still live
Antoni | Australia | 08/09/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
Read the trilogy first because it is one of the few true masterfull trilogies then watch the trilogy on dvd"
William A. Levinson | Wilkes-Barre, PA USA | 03/24/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"After seeing "With Fire and Sword" and "The Deluge," I surprised myself by guessing Pan Zagloba's line as he tossed away an empty wine bottle before the subtitle appeared: "I hate empty bottles!" Michael Wolodyjowski is the perfect soldier and Basia is a likeable and plucky heroine.
Daniel Olbrychski is good as Ayza Bey and even better as Tuhaj Bey in "With Fire and Sword." The story and the performances are absolutely outstanding, although the film's color leaves something to be desired.
The story ends with a premonition of how Colonel Wolodyjowski's death will be avenged, and it is unfortunate that Sienkiewicz never wrote a sequel that portrayed the Battle of Vienna (1683). Jan Skshetuski from "With Fire and Sword" would have been around sixty and could have taken part along with his numerous sons."