Andrzej Zulawski: Three Films [The Third Part of the Night/The Devil/On the Silver Globe] [Blu-ray]
Blu-ray B - United Kingdom - Eureka
Review written by and copyright: Eric Cotenas (11th September 2023).
The Film

"An uncompromising visionary and a true maverick of European cinema, the Masters of Cinema Series is proud to present three films by Andrzej Żuławski, all making their UK debuts on Blu-ray from definitive restorations."

Third Part of the Night: His health having deteriorated supporting his wife Marta (The Deluge's Malgorzata Braunek) and child in the city by "feeding lice" to help produce a typhus vaccine, law student-turned-salesman Michal (With Fire and Sword's Leszek Teleszynski) is convalescing at the country residence of his parents when Nazi troupes raid the area and execute his wife, son, and mother (Halina Czengery). Michal and his father (Jerzy Golinski) escape back to the city where the younger man is driven to join the resistance in spite of the warnings of his Marian (Nights and Days's Michal Grudzinski) that he is ill-suited to it due to his middle class upbringing.

When Michal goes to meet his contact, the other man is gunned down and Michal flees the Nazis and manages to evade them only because they have shot and wounded a man dressed similarly to him on the stairwell of an apartment building right in front of the man's pregnant wife. Michal must help deliver her child when she suddenly goes into labor, and he is suddenly struck by the realization that she is the living image of his dead wife as he passes out from his own gunshot wound. Michal dreams of his past when he could no longer study due to the Nazi occupation and became a salesman whereupon he first met Marta, then unhappily married to Jan (The Hourglass Sanatorium's Jan Nowicki) who she claims has gone crazy due to his work feeding lice in order to produce a typhus vaccine and treats her cruelly.

The two fall in love and have a child together, but Michal nevertheless takes out his guilt about displacing her husband onto her. Feeling as if he has wronged his wife, Michal sees his chance at redemption in helping his wife's double and her newborn child who have sought shelter in the convent where his sister (A Hundred Horses to a Hundred Shores' Anna Milewska) once hid him, Marta, and their son even though no one else can the resemblance of the woman to his wife. Becoming a lice feeder again to obtain the vaccine and rations for the woman and her son, he starts to reflect on his marriage and question just how truthful his wife was to him, and the only way to alleviate his own guilt may be to join the resistance again and rescue her husband who is on his deathbed after having suffered beatings and interrogations in Michal's place.

Co-scripted with his father Miroslaw Żuławski (The Atlantic Tale), Andrzej Żuławski's The Third Part of the Night is very different from even the most doom-laden Polish war film, including those of Andrzej Wajda for whom Żuławski had served as assistant director (Wajda would later produce Żuławski's follow-up The Devil). The film is an interior journey in which past and present merge, revealing unpleasant things to the protagonist about his relationships that have only been concealed from him by him with the metaphysical elements – from the various projections of his father and sister of Marta as a "devourer" or the "Great Mother of Harlots" to the increasingly obvious final twist – a psychic smokescreen. When Michal tells the possibly real or spectral Jan he no longer feels guilty about him, it is not a disavowal but an admission of not of mere complicity but his role in what transpired.

The film was photographed by Witold Sobocinski (Frantic) and the camera operated by Maciej Kijowski who then photographed Żuławski's The Devil, and the handheld, constantly mobile, rushing, and encircling approach to coverage that would become the signature of Kijowski's operator-turned-cinematographer Andrzej Jaroszewicz's subsequent work for the director – even on later films like Possession on which ? stepped back into the role of operator under Bruno Nyutten – is already in evident here as if underlining Michal's essential passivity however fast and recklessly he rushes through the story devastating those from which he seeks knowledge or tries to help. The anachronistic, experimental scoring of Żuławski regular Andrzej Korzynski (Cosmos) quite aggressively underlines the psychological approach to what could have been a melodramatic scenario in other hands.

Żuławski's follow-up feature The Devil takes place during another turbulent period in Polish history, the second partition of Poland in 1793. Amidst the massacre of Polish soldiers who had been told by Parliament to stand down but had been personally paid by their commander to fight, a mysterious stranger (The Promised Land's Wojciech Pszoniak) rides straight into the prison with orders to escort the prisoners who attempted to assassinate the King to Warsaw. Jakub (Leszek Teleszynski again) is delirious from fever, so only the nun Zakonnica (Łuk Erosa's Monika Niemczyk) witnesses in mute terror the stranger's cold-blooded murder of Jakub's co-conspirator Tomasz. Putting Jakub atop a horse with Zakonnica to care for him, the stranger reveals that he is actually there to free Jakub. He orders Jakub back despite the younger man's sense of duty that he should go to the Warsaw where he believes the other members of the plot must be fighting for their lives.

Jakub travels to the palace of his best friend the local Count (Maciej Englert) just in time to see his own fiancée (Malgorzata Braunek again) forced into marriage. The stranger turns up just in time to inform him of the treachery of his co-conspirators who told his fiancée that Jakub was dead. When his fiancée sees him, Jakub overhears the Count tells her that she has only seen a ghost. Jakub goes home to discover his father has committed suicide and his corpse is still propped up in his study, being tended by Ezechiel (Michal Grudzinski again) – a man who claims to be his half-brother by their mother who abandoned her family years before – who has not only assumed Jakub's place in punishing his sister (Anna Parzonka) for attending balls at the Count's palace where her flirtations have driven Ezechiel to violent jealousy (as the man also claims to be his sister's fiancé).

Jakub learns from the stranger that his mother (The Cradle's Iga Mayr) is nearby running a bordello, and she tries to seduce him and nearly sleeps with him before he reveals his identity. Jakub takes out his frustration on a prostitute, slitting her throat with a straight razor given to him by the stranger. After learning that his father went mad and raped his fiancée before "selling" her to the Count, Jakub goes to rescue her only to be set upon by the Count and his co-conspirators as the traitor. The Count cannot bring himself to kill his former best friend, and instead crucifies him in the woods where he is rescued once again by the stranger. With all of his friends having betrayed him, his father mad and dead, his sister gone mad and engaging in incest with his half-brother, and even his mother – who is seemingly pulling strings behind the scenes for someone in power and possibly grooming his sister to take his fiancée's place – wanting him to join her gang with the promise that he can kill as many prostitute as he wants so long as it is entertaining for their clients, Jakub is losing the will to resist the stranger's urging that he should purify his family with the blade; but will the price he must pay for the stranger's help be his life or his immortal soul?

More "gothic" in conception than The Third Part of the Night, The Devil is another interior journey set within a historical setting turned into a Boschian hellscape. Teleszynski's "every man" is another essentially passive observer; but the parallels between his character and Hamlet that are apparent even before episodes involving a theatrical troupe living a commune-like existence in the woods with the owner (The Hourglass Sanatorium's Wiktor Sadecki) so covetous of Jakub's youth and beauty that he is willing to overlook Jakub's murder of the lead actress (The Finger of God's Bozena Miefiodow) and the young actor (Żuławski's brother Lukasz Żuławski) actually playing Hamlet in the troupe. This time around, it is the stranger – who may or may not be the devil himself or a devil of another sort – drives the narrative by repeatedly saving Jakub, even dragging Jakub along when he is both physically and mentally exhausted.

The viewer may either have familiarity with Żuławski's filmography, so preoccupied determining whether the stranger is meant to be Satan himself, a demon, or a human agent, or even the Hamlet references to question just how much of the hidden truths the stranger goads Jakub towards are truthful. It may be that Jakub is so righteous and eager to cast himself as a Hamlet that he so easily accepts an entire conspiracy against himself that would make his friends turn against their ideals – his best friend purely out of lust it seems – and that his father, sister, and Ophelia-like fiancée would be driven mad by the machinations of some strange cabal (of which the titular devil may just be an errand boy). While Teleszynski plays things just this side of the absolute hysteria of which others in the cast wallow freely, Pszoniak catches us and the hero off-guard, alternately gloating or complaining about Jakub's thankless behavior that it is difficult to predict his end game. In a film where women are either "evil" women are powerful and "innocent" women are driven mad, Niemczyk's nun is a character who seems destined for the same fate and only seems to triumph because her own inaction for much of the film has allowed her to see things more clearly than Jakub (and she is the only person to see the stranger's true nature).

With the aformentioned Jaroszewicz serving as operator for the first time on a Żuławski film (under The Third Part of the Night operator-turned-cinematographer Kijowski, the handheld camerawork feels even more frenetic, particularly in the context of the period setting; and yet, or because of it, Korzynski's almost psychedelic score – sounding like a hybrid of Bruno Nicolai, Alessandro Alessandroni, and Peter Thomas – suits a film seemingly less concerned with the plot of the "plot" than all of the things to which God is seemingly silent and indifferent (calling to mind the father's prayer in The Third Part of the Night over the bodies of his dead wife, daughter-in-law, and grandson: "Oh, God, who allows cruelty to be propagated and people to torment each other…"). Due to the film being banned and not screened publicly until 1987, Żuławski would exile himself to Paris where he made a splash with the French/Italian/West German co-production That Most Important Thing: Love; whereupon the Polish government would invite him back and give him virtual carte blanche to mount his biggest film yet… or so it seemed.

On the Silver Globe: On a dystopian future Earth where scientists live underground and the dwellers above ground have reverted to tribal hunting bands, a pair of scientists living above the ground in the ruins of a Polish palace – subduing and placating the local band with a supply of hallucinogenic chemicals and trinkets – are presented by one of the hunters with a satellite device that is at least fifty years old but the hunter claims has only just fallen from the sky. The scientists take it below ground to decode the signal and discover that it is the record of a rocket mission of rebel scientists searching for a new planet to start over. The rocket has crashed, killing the captain and gravely injuring chief engineer Tomasz (Leszek Dlugosz), but the atmosphere is breathable and the three survivors set about building a shelter.

Marta (Wilczyca's Iwona Bielska) is pregnant with Tomasz's child and survivors Jerzy (Ida's Jerzy Trela) and Piotr (Triumph of the Spirit's Jerzy Gralek) observe upon his birth that the child Tomasz is growing at an accelerated rate. Marta and Piotr soon lose interest in documenting their experience, and Jerzy observes as the pair's attempt to populate the planet with rapidly-gestating and growing children creates a society that sees the three of them as Gods due to their taller stature and their outliving multiple generations of offspring. When Piotr is mysteriously killed and Marta dies after giving birth to her final child – her only one with Jerzy, a girl Ada (Hospital of the Transfiguration's Elzbieta Karkoszka) who christens herself the interpreter of Marta – fear of an unknown enemy and Jerzy's inability to provide satisfactory answers to their questions about life and death make him an outcast even as they still revere and fear him. With his last breath, he travels back to the rocket and sends the video record back home.

Curious about what has become of the civilization, Earthling Marek (Golem's Andrzej Seweryn) takes an advanced automatic return rocket to the planet only to discover its culture has advanced significantly over the last half-century more so than its technology. Apart from the religion of Tomasz and Marta, a secret brotherhood has been awaiting the return of the Earth God to their planet and have created prophesies and texts in expectation that the God will come and vanquish their mortal enemy the Sherds, ferocious bird-like creatures that steal their women for use as incubators with the side effect of bodily mutation. Emotionally-shattered by the infidelity of his actress love Aza (Man of Iron's Krystyna Janda), Marek has exiled himself from the Earth and his initial detached scientific fascination with the civilization blurs with his own desire to find order in chaos.

Leading an army against the Sherds, Marek captures Aviy who is able to telepathically communicate with him through an eye in its forehead. Marek is disturbed to discover the intelligence of his enemy and unable to reconcile their violence with his own suppressed animal impulses and only finds comfort in deflowering vestal virgin Ihezal (Hijacked to Hell's Grazyna Dylag); however, the more mortal he becomes in the eyes of his people, the more they begin to doubt he is their savior with high priest Malahuda (Medium's Henryk Bista) starting to believe that Marek did not come to them but was cast out of Earth. When Aza's guilt-ridden lover Jacek (Quo Vadis?'s Waldemar Kownacki) follows Marek to the planet, he inadvertently seals the other man's fate and discovers that Gods are better unseen and unheard.

Based upon "The Lunar Trilogy" penned between 1901 and 1911 by Żuławski's great uncle Jerzy Żuławski, On the Silver Globe marked Żuławski's invitation back to Poland by the Ministry of Cultural Affairs after his success with That Most Important Thing: Love with the offer to make a project of his own choice. Production began in 1976 and continued through 1977 with some friction over the speed of production and the budget until the new vice-minister of cultural affairs shut down the production which was reportedly eighty-percent completed and ordered all materials destroyed. Most of the costumes and props were preserved and stored by crew members while Żuławski went abroad, making his most widely-recognized cult classic melodrama-masquerading-as-a-horror-film Possession and a pair of mainstream French productions La femme publique and L'amour braque (the latter on which he would meet his romantic partner of the next sixteen years in actress Sophie Marceau) before agreeing to return to Poland in 1986 to complete On the Silver Globe.

Rather than attempting to shoot the unfinished scenes for the film, Żuławski reunited much of the cast to post-synchronize their dialogue and shot handheld scenes of contemporary Poland over which he himself provided narration filling in the gaps in the story of a film he describes in the opening narration as having been "murdered" in 1977. While the film would seem like a patchwork assembly on paper, it is difficult to imagine On the Silver Globe as a "completed" film. The 1976-77 scenes alone are both as intellectually-stimulating for the viewer as they are as emotionally and even physically exhausting for the viewer as they are for Marek; so viscerally-powerful that the narration cutaways to random footage of the Polish countryside, industrial landscapes, and metropolitan life provide brief respite for the viewer. One also imagines the possibility that the connective expository sequences dramatized might have an effect on the pacing while sequences depicting the relationships between Aza and Marek and Aza and Jacek might have seemed both prosaic in their narrative content and might have also undercut or made monotonous the hysterical interactions between Marek and Ihezal towards the climax and Jacek and Aza during the latter third of the film. Some of the bigger sequences like the Sherd battle might also have dulled the brutality of the crucifixion sequence and a coda that concludes Jacek's story while also working in some of the third volume of the trilogy might have felt drawn out in the aftermath of Marek's martyrdom.

Epic in scope and conceptual design more so than resources, On the Silver Globe alongside Alejandro Jodorowsky's extensive and expensive unsuccessful development of an adaptation of Frank Herbert's "Dune" and Andrei Tarkovsky's adaptations of Solaris and Stalker offer up a possibility of a more substantive alternative evolution of mainstream science fiction to what did hit the screens with Star Wars. Not only does the film offer up a more probing examination of what it means to be human, the film seems far more realistic and honest about the effects of messianic religions and protagonists with messiah complexes than the likes any of the filmed adaptations of the Herbert novel. The crude design of the Sherds not only feels theatrical, but the indistinctness of the facial designs actually feels more terrifying as it requires both Marek and the viewer to peer more closely to find something relatable while the humanoid voice seems as much a mockery as its retorts to Marek's attempts to establish his moral and intellectual superiority (the film's male protagonist possesses some interesting parallels not only with Żuławski's earlier protagonists but also those of Possession and his final Polish picture Szamanka).

Although framed for the horizontally-narrow 1.66:1 aspect ratio, the photography of Jaroszewicz still feels expansive, even in the predominant wide angle close-ups that place characters like Marek at the center of the universe while giving a sense of his fatal disregard for the masses behind him along the beaches or within the caves. The handheld photography of the Jerzy sequence fit the video diary format as Jerzy and other characters look directly into the lens and implicate the viewer's impassive gaze, while the photographic approach subsequently lends itself to the performative aspects of both Marek's leadership and the religious and theatrical spectacle that attempts to impose order where there is none. Korzynski's approach to the score still possesses some psychedelic elements but also anticipates the Vangelis and Brian Eno-esque soundscapes to come more so than John Williams orchestral majesty (Korzynski appears to have reworked one of the film's main themes in a more romantic arrangement for Żuławski's later French melodrama La fidélité).


Screened at the 1971 Venice Film Festival and then released in Poland theatrically, The Third Part of the Night has since been difficult for general audiences to see outside of festival screenings throughout the years until Second Run released the film on DVD in 2007 utilizing a fair-looking non-anamorphic letterboxed master. We have not seen the transfer that appeared as part of an English-friendly Polish DVD boxed set of the director's works or the HD master that appeared on the 2018 Japanese Blu-ray or the French limited edition set from Le chat qui fume earlier this year, but Eureka's 1080p24 MPEG-4 AVC 1.66:1 widescreen Blu-ray comes from a 4K restoration, the grading of which was supervised by Andrzej Jaroszewicz. The master seems to better represent the film's cool look, with the actors exhibiting different degrees of paleness owing to their health and the chilly setting than the older SD master that pinker skin tones. Detail varies during the frenetic handheld sequences but static shots and close-ups allow assessment of the gritty textures of authentic locations, clothing, hair, and the fevered flesh of the characters.

Banned upon release and then forgotten until 1987 as Żuławski returned to working on On the Silver Globe, The Devil was long available in Poland and France in a non-anamorphic letterboxed transfer that found its way stateside on an unauthorized label. Eureka's 1080p24 MPEG-4 AVC 1.66:1 widescreen Blu-ray comes from a 2016 restoration that was initially rejected by Żuławski for the wrong grading and subsequently corrected by Jaroszewicz. We have no idea if the earlier Japanese and French Blu-ray utilize this version because Jaroszewicz discovered that the master provided to Eureka once again had the wrong grading and the licensors could not find the corrected version. This caused a delay from the initial street date as Jaroszewicz went back to work to fix this master. The DVD transfer was a murky affair where costumes, shadows, and hair became masses of black and whites were either blindingly free of any detail and texture or diluted by blue or green tinges. The new 1080p24 MPEG-4 AVC 1.66:1 transfer sets things right, removing the blue tinge to the darker scenes, revealing the white habits of nuns to be dirtied (or perhaps stained in order to not blow out on film), skintones that are various shades of pink rather than gray or white, and wooded settings are also now browner than gray and white.

Not finished until 1988, On the Silver Globe played at Cannes and the Polish Film Festival before its 1989 Polish theatrical release, but it would be nearly twenty years before it appeared on home video. The DVD transfers made use of a murky 1.56:1 non-anamorphic letterboxed digital master which would be the only game in town until a 2016 4K restoration supervised by Żuławski and Jaroszewicz. Apart from the film festival play, the only way to see the restoration was as a Japanese Blu-ray – available separately or as part of set with The Third Part of the Night and The Devil – and as part of the aforementioned Le chat qui fume set. Eureka's 1080p24 MPEG-4 AVC 1.66:1 widescreen Blu-ray faithfully represents the cool look of the film, from the green-tinged Jerzy sequence (Żuławski biographer Daniel Bird explains elsewhere in the set that this part of the film was shot with a green filter intended for black and white photography on the lens and that both he and Jaroszewicz had to assure technicians that the green bias of the negative was not a flaw or deterioration). Fine detail is in long shots is subject to the darkness of many of the settings but asserts itself in all of the film's wide angle deep focus close-ups from facial features and hair to costumes and entrails. The film is so predominantly green, blue, gray, and black that it is a shock when real saturated color enters the frame first in the form of the religious costumes and then in the graphic bloodshed of the climax of the film.


While rechanneled 5.1 mixes have been prepared for all three of 4K restorations, Eureka has opted for the original mono mixes in 24-bit LPCM 2.0. Presumably the restorers have gone back to the original stems and magnetic materials rather than just attempting to clean up optical tracks, and the tracks are clean and crisp, conveying post-synchronized dialogue, vividly mixed scoring, and sound effects that range from merely supportive to deliberately grating. It is perhaps as much a testament to the restoration as the original mixes that one cannot opine that the most recent of the mixes On the Silver Globe having been done in the late eighties is technically "better" than the two films mixed in the early seventies. Optional English subtitles are free of any glaring errors.


The sole extra for The Third Part of the Night is "Michael Brooke on The Third Part of the Night" (15:03) in which Brooke discusses the Żuławski family's artistic heritage – with great uncle Jerzy one of the pioneers of Polish science fiction, and his father Miroslaw an artist in addition to being a diplomat – his education at the Sorbonne and then film school in Poland, working under Wajda, and his first shorts. He also provides some context to the Polish treatment of the war in film, as well as noting that Żuławski was a child during the war unlike colleagues like Wajda, so the film draws from his father's memories (including being feeding lice). Of the film, he discusses the cast including Braunek who was his wife at the time – and the separation from here which would inform the broken family dynamic of Possession – Teleszynski who would embody similar sort of "every man" in The Devil, and Nowicki as well as discussing the recurring use of the doppelganger in Żuławski's filmography, and noting that Wajda would produce his next film in spite of Żuławski telling him what he could do with his opinion of The Third Part of the Night.

Brooke appears again on The Devil in "Michael Brooke on The Devil" (18:18) where he classifies the film as the "first real Polish horror film" and muses on the title and its lack of article in Polish. He muses on the film's emotional excesses, the theme of the ruptured family, and the use of dance and performance, as well as providing background on the cast (particularly Pszoniak who achieved international recognition playing Robespierre in Wajda's Danton.

In "Lukasz Żuławski on The Devil" (19:02), the director's brother discusses his schooling and stage career, and how an inflammatory line in a play he did lead to his enforced stint in the army amid the expulsion of forty-thousand Jews in 1968. He describes the film as "Gothic" in its scenario but "baroque" in execution, that he was cast because he could act and ride a horse – and was willing to do it without a stuntman on the uneven woodland – his razor murder scene, the dwarf character (Marian Zdenicki) as a swipe at a critic who insulted Żuławski, and the purely financial reasons behind releasing the film in 1988.

On the Silver Globe is the only film in the set accompanied by a commentary, and the audio commentary by film historian Daniel Bird who discusses the source novel, noting that the expedition was to the moon but that had to be changed given the actual moon landing in the years since the novel's publication. Bird also discusses the evolution of Jaroszewicz's visual design throughout the film as well as in the design of the costumes from functional – aping the look of the astronaut suits worn by the "Gods" – to aesthetic as they took on a religious significance. He also reveals that the horse rider seen in the opening sequence Krzysztof Tyszkiewicz was not only a horse trainer but he contributed to the design and costumes of the tribe in the Earth sequences. He debunks the notion that Żulawski's decision to adapt his great uncle's work was a personal exorcism in the aftermath of his split with his wife – Possession is the more likely confessional work – revealing anecdotes that suggest Żulawski had wanted to do it for some time. He also casts doubt on Żulawski's claim that the costumes were ordered destroyed, noting that the animal skins were not cured so they rotted in storage. His commentary is also helpful in teasing out some of the film's philosophical ideas which are not original to the rather straightforward literary source, describing the dialogue style as sort of "text collage" of ideas and sources.

In "Adam Żulawski on Jerzy Żulawski" (20:45), the author's grandson's discusses the differences between Western science fiction as embodied by H.G. Wells and Jules Verne with Polish science fiction, the influence of Polish anthropology Bronisław Malinowski and avant-garde artist and writer Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz (aka Witkacy), and Żulawski's influence in turn on Polish science ficiton author Stanisław Lem and the Russian brothers Arkady and Boris Strugatsky.

"Return to the Silver Globe" (10:34) is a visit with cinematographer Jaroszewicz and a camera crew to the salt mine location. There is little dialogue but Jaroszewicz is fascinating to watch was he relives memories and inscribes his name on a brick next to several other past workers and visitors.

In "The Cinematography of On the Silver Globe" (11:13), Bird provides detail on the lenses Jaroszewicz used on each part of the film as well as filters, film stock, and lighting to distinguish the looks and tones of the sequences.

In "Lunar Futurism" (6:08), Bird is a visual essay that examines the costume designs of Magdalena Tesławska (La note bleue) including illustrations that she gave to Bird when she was designing costumes for a play he directed. Bird also reveals that Tesławska got the job by winning a competition for the Sherd design.

A fourth bonus Blu-ray disc includes Escape to the Silver Globe (95:46), a 2021 feature-length documentary by Kuba Mikurda, director of the documentary Love Express. The Disappearance of Walerian Borowczyk and the coming Solaris Mon Amour. The film presents a rare, multi-faceted, if not always flattering picture of the director at work. His son Xawery Żuławski (Chaos) acknowledges that the unfinished film was a very painful experience for his father and muses on how his father's career might have been different had the film been completed and released, while also noting his shortcomings as a father in his quest for uncompromising freedom. He and some of his father's contemporaries like recall the glamorous impression made by Żuławski and Braunek as a magnetically-handsome couple, his mentorship under Andrzej Wajda - Żuławski recalls his admiration for Wajda in interview footage while director Janusz Zaorski recalls that his actor brother actually mistook Żuławski for Wajda at an audition because Żuławski took on Wajda's style and mannerisms - and how it paved the way for his feature debut. They also cover the shelving of The Devil and Żuławski being advised to leave Poland - even receiving a passport literally "under the table" – only to be invited back by communist party boss Edward Gierak who felt that promoting Polish cultural arts would win international support after Żuławski made a splash with That Most Important Thing: Love (Żuławski in an archival interview also recalls that the offer was made to shoot a film that would "make everyone happy" and that The Devil would also finally be released).

Xawery Żuławski recalls his father's return and his parents' stormy sepearation - as well as musing on why none of his father's relationships worked out, while Lukasz Żuławski recalls his brother's depression in the aftermath of his separation before mounting On the Silver Globe, and screenwriter Maria Konwicka provides some background on Żuławski's philosophical interests and his pessimistic view of humanity. Actor Seweryn compares his experience working on Wajda's epic The Promised Land to Żuławski's film and his love of his character but also recalls that Wajda advised Żuławski against making the film as too big for the Polish film industry. Set designer Tomasz Biernawski compares the designs and the scale of the film to Star Wars while acknowleding that Żuławski could not have made the film in the West, Jaroszewicz recalls the contrast between the country's economic downturn and the high budget of the film reflected in the way the film's post-Soviet high-tech designs are held together behind the scenes by hammers, nails, and pieces of string, assistant costume designer Liliana Bartecki-Nieumierzycki recalls Żuławski's perfectionism and how his extreme determination turned him into a sort of guru to the crew at first, and assistant art director Barbara Komosinska recalls the creativity Żuławski inspired in them but also being gradually pushed past creative stimulation towards the end of their tether. As the shoot went on over a year, Jaroszewicz suggests that the crew was "living the film" as an escape from reality, second production manager Michal J. Zablocki draws parallels between Żuławski as the god on set and Marek, and Seweryn between Żuławski and Marek in their reaction to their lost loves. Prop maker Zdzislaw Zablocki recalled not only the grueling salt mine shoot but also using a hand from the morgue in the crucifixion scene due to Żuławski wanting something new and innovative in terms of effects rather than a trick blade or a fake hand, as well as Seweryn agreeing to have his eyes superglued open for the crucifixion scene.

TV critic Jacek Fuksiewicz and Gierak recall the effect of the release of Wajda's Man of Marble on the party whose cultural politics shifted towards the conservative, installing Deputy Head of Television Janusz Wilhelmi in Gierak's place as Deputy Head of Film, and Wilhelmi's show of power in halting the production, humiliating both Żuławski and State Film Company head power and to humiliate Żuławski as well as Aleksander Scibor-Rylski who had penned Man of Marble in place of Wajda who, unlike Żuławski, had support of Polish Filmmakers' Association. Lukasz Żuławski recalls how Andrzej was once again asked to leave Poland and handed a passport, after which Wilhelmi was killed in a plane crash (none of the interviewees seem particularly saddened by that). Footage from Henry Chapier's “Le couch" interview with Żuławski and Sophie Marceau announces plans to finish the film, while Xawery and Lukasz reveal that behind the scenes, Andrzej's enthusiasm was gone at that point, explaining his approach to finishing it with Polish city scenes and narration.


Housed with the discs in a three-thousand copy limited edition hardbound slipcase is a sixty-page collector's booklet. "The Enigmas of Żuławski" by Philip Kemp appropriately focuses on The Third Part of the Night and The Devil and the way they inform the rest of Żuławski's filmography, while "Unidentified Film Object" by Daniel Bird is based on notes he prepared for a 2018 presentation on the convoluted production history and restoration of On the Silver Globe (revised for this release, the essay is extensively footnoted with all of the sources including personal communications with Żulawski and Tesławska among many others).

"Andrzej Żuławski's On the Silver Globe" by Andrew Graves provides an overview of Żulawski's attempt to capture the entire "Lunar Trilogy" in one film, the production issues, the finished film's innovations, and asserts that what the film "attempts to hide its message within the folds of popular genre tropes or aesthetic artistry [...] actually provides to its viewer is not an alien story, but one that's almost too Earthly to bear." "The Tale of a Confiscated Film" – a translation from a Samizdat journal on the official Polish coverage of the film – is also included along with a letter to the Ministry of Culture, viewing notes, and Blu-ray credits.


Although The Third Part of the Night, The Devil, and On the Silver Globe have been available, officially and unofficially, even in HD, Eureka's Andrzej Zulawski: Three Films is the first truly satisfyingly "authoritative" package of the director's first three films.


Rewind DVDCompare is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program and the Amazon Europe S.a.r.l. Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to,,,,, and . As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases.