Gobierno de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires Ministerio de Cultura

Film info: Essential Killing

Film Information

Original Title Essential Killing
English Title Essential Killing
Director Jerzy Skolimowski
Year 2010
Format DCP
Colour Color
Duration 83 min
  • Vincent Gallo, Emmanuelle Seigner, David L. Price, Stig Frode Henriksen, Nicolai Cleve Broch.
  • Guión: Ewa Piaskowska , Jerzy Skolimowski
  • Fotografía: Adam Sikora
  • Montaje: Réka Lemhényi
  • Producción: Ewa Piaskowska , Jerzy Skolimowski


If Four Nights with Anna (2008) could have been regarded as the sporadic comeback of a has been director, its immediate follow-up Essential Killing proved that Polish filmmaker Jerzy Skolimowski is back in cinema for good. Awarded many times since its premiere in Venice, including Best Picture in the neighbor festival of Mar del Plata, it’s a pure action film with a contemporary spirit that yet doesn’t prevent it from addressing universal issues and present a different kind of male hero without giving up one bit of the genre’s most attractive element. The action starts in the Afghan mountains, where a Taliban fighter is discovered and captured by Western forces. Tortured and interrogated by the military, he’s taken to a maximum security base the US has in Eastern Europe. The rest of the film narrates the prisoner’s desperate escape through a snowed forest. The lead character is played by an always interesting Vincent Gallo, who takes on the physical and emotional challenge of the captured character, who never speaks and of whom we don’t even know his name.

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