Review: Communion (aka Komunia)


Bits of bread are sacrificed into the woodstove because there is no more wood. Short-listed for the 91st Academy Awards Best Documentary, this intimate black-and-white observational documentary is set in Warsaw, Poland. Will this sleeper, abruptly surfacing from the European backwoods, usurp the crown?

The film’s title ostensibly refers to the first communion of an autistic boy. But communion also means a deep communication of thoughts and feelings with another – and in this case, that other is us, the viewers. The family has allowed complete exposure. We see how the autistic son, Nikodem, reacts to the sounds and feel of a bath, to the codes of his religion, to his sister’s terse care and to the appearance of his estranged mother. (CONTINUED)

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