From Forced to Voluntary Migration in ‘Perdiendo El Norte’

‘Perdiendo El Norte’ (2015) couldn’t exist apart from the Great Recession and the EU’s chronic imbalance between its northern and southern members. Although this is ostensibly a romantic comedy (and it’s very funny indeed — streets ahead of Hollywood), the film has a serious theme, attested to by the fact that Yon González and Blanca […]

What’s Poland Really Worth? Tied Loyalty in ‘Kamienie na szaniec’

It seems churlish to question the efforts of resistance fighters against Nazi and Soviet oppression during the 1940s and later. After all, these individuals were fighting against the tyranny of dictators and an inhuman regime, right? Maybe. But as this 2014 adaptation of Aleksandr Kamiński’s novel, Kamienie na szaniec (1943), or Stones for the Rampart, reveals, freedom fighters aren’t always […]

The Idolatry of Family in Eastern Europe

Ironically the family becomes a retreat from the banality of life at the same time as it serves as the idol preventing people from entering into true Christianity. Tired of work and lack of opportunity, men and women retreat inwards to the earthy reality of sex and childbearing. Family reunions and special occasions take on dramatic importance. Yet at the same time, retreating into this pagan cradle further distances such people from entering into real life, which is precisely what the Church and the State want, because Christianity is so dangerous.