Talking Heads / Gadające głowy (1980)

Talking Heads / Gadajace glowy (1980, 16 min.), dir. Krzysztof Kieslowski. A screenshot from the film.

(Interview to a three-year-older, excerpt from the film)
– Who are you?
– I don’t know

Ever wondered what Brandon Stanton’s HONY or any other Humans of… initiative would have been like, say, in the ‘70s?

Krzysztof Kieślowski’s documentary short is one possible scenario. Entitled Talking Heads rather than Humans of Poland, but the concept remains the same: Humans and their stories (1935: “I am a chemical engineer. Now I drink. What do I want? Nothing. Everything is just fine”). Lives and their captions (1959: “So far, I’m nobody. It could last for some time. But I’d like to become… what is called… a human person”). Points of view (1934: “Now that I’m a taxi driver, I feel more free. But I realized that personal freedom is not enough. To be really liberated and free requires democracy and security. Personal freedom isn’t enough”). Losses (1894: “I’ve been a widow for two weeks. Widow of the late Stanislaw. That’s all. What do I want? Nothing”) and wishes (1880: “I’m one hundred years old. How much more do I want? To live longer. Much longer”).

After all, it’s not the FB that makes every Humans of… so great: it’s the Humans – in 2013 as in 1979. Meet them in this splendid black & white short.

Sourced from IMDb: “In 1980, the late Krzysztof Kieslowski interviewed a number of ordinary Poles (born at various times over the preceding 100 years), asking them who they were and what they wanted from life. The results were assembled into this short film. What strikes one today, whether it is a sign of communist Poland at this time, or merely of Kieslowksi’s own fascination with moral questions, is how sombre and serious most of the answers are: no-one says they want to sleep with a film star or make a quick million. It’s also noticeable how similar the answers are, despite the great age difference of the participants. The best answer is fittingly the last one.”

Words by Jurga


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