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Lunch » Tags » Movies » Reviews » Knife in the Water » User review

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1962 film directed by Roman Polanski

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Mind games and sexual tension on a boat. Roman Polanski's directorial film debut.

  • Oct 2, 2009
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Rating:
+5
Knife in Water (Nóż w wodzie) was the directorial film debut of Roman Polanksi.  After directing several short films, Polanski returned to Poland to work on his first film.  He wrote the screenplay along with two other film students (Jerzy Skolimowski and Jakub Goldberg).  Most of the movie takes place on a sailboat and features only three actors.  The main reason for only three actors was to keep the budget small and manageable.  The story is about a married couple spending a weekend on a sailboat.  The husband Andrzej is forty and his bride Krystyna is in her twenties.  A young man is hitchhiking and Andrzej almost hits him.  After a brief argument with the hitchhiker, he decides to give him a ride to the dock,  When they get their, Andrzej decides to take the young man along with Krystyna for a cruise around the lake.  During the the trip, the husband gives the young man a crash course on sailing and often talks down to him.  The two try to one up each other in front of Krystyna and are constantly butting heads.  But one of them has to give.

A claustrophobic and tightly shot film from Polanski.  The directing is fluid and you'll feel cramped in,like the cast members on the set.  The tension between the two actors over the actress seems to be real and it shows on the screen.  Polanski's performance as the "young boy" brings a naivete aura that was needed in the film (he dubs the original actor's voice) and the woman who plays Krystyna is very attractive (too bad she never starred in a major film).  I really enjoyed this movie, the acting and directing make this one an entertaining picture.  You can tell that Polanski was a major talent who was a film or two away from striking it big.  Even though the film was under strict censorship and editorial content, the talented Polanski still managed to make a creepy and sexually tense film that a few directors could get away with.

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About the reviewer
Joseph Ulibas ()
Ranked #32
I have been working on my web series Fine Feather Friends.
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About this movie

Wiki

Roman Polanski's feature film directorial debut.

The film only features three actors.

Polanski was originally going to co-star as "The Boy" but the film's producer felt he wasn't attractive enough.  But he ended up dubbing the voice of the actor who portrayed "The Boy" because his voice was too "mature sounding".
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Details

Director: Roman Polanski
Genre: Mystery, Drama
Release Date: March 9, 1962
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Runtime: 94 minutes
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