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Dorota Kobiela's The Peasants

Annual Top Films Lists

Top 200 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2023: #71. Dorota Kobiela’s The Peasants

Top 200 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2023: #71. Dorota Kobiela’s The Peasants

The Peasants

We thought there might be a genuine chance at catching this last year (we had it at the #80 slot) but the nature of the (animation) beast means it’s a painstakingly long process. Polish filmmaker Dorota Kobiela is best known for 2017’s Loving Vincent (which she co-directed with Hugh Welchman) and here she moved into her feature solo debut with The Peasants. Co-written/co-produced by Welchman and Sean Bobbitt, they’ve been working on the project since ’20. Set at the end of the 19th century, this tells a story of love and life in a small community, where rules and traditions dictate everyone’s role.

Gist: This is a tragic story of a peasant girl Jagna forced to marry a much older, wealthy farmer Boryna, despite her love for his son Antek. With time, Jagna becomes the object of envy and hate of the villagers and has to fight to preserve her independence. Set in the Polish countryside on the cusp of the 19th and 20th Centuries, the story’s dramatic turns tie into the changing seasons, hard labour in the fields and traditional local holidays.

Release Date/Prediction: It could very well premiere just about anywhere on the film festival circuit, but we see this as a Venice plus Telluride premiere.

Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist and critic at (founded in 2000). Eric is a regular at Sundance, Cannes and TIFF. He has a BFA in Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013 he served as a Narrative Competition Jury Member at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson's This Teacher (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022 he served as a New Flesh Comp for Best First Feature at the 2022 Fantasia Intl. Film Festival. Current top films for 2022 include Tár (Todd Field), All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen), Aftersun (Charlotte Wells).

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