Tonia And Her Children | My house without me

Marcel Lozinski | Magdalena Szymków

Poland, 2011, 57 min. | Poland, Germany, 2012, 29 min,

Tonia and Her Children is a film about the consequences of the ideological choices of parents and the impact of them on their children. A story of siblings, Werka and Marcel Lechtman, who were sent to an orphanage when their pre-war communist mother was sent to prison, accused of being an American spy. The protagonists recollect the past and try to understand their mother’s choices.

Two women, one house. A story about a Pole and a German on enemy sides and their parallel lives that are accidentally brought together. The film confronts the similarities shared by different experiences. The visual narration is guided by memories and archives. Here traditional documentation confronts the experimental use of archival footage giving a cinematic impression.

In Tonia and Her Children the arrest-ridden life of Tonia Lechtman is reconstructed by her two children and filmmaker Marcel Lozinski. The other film, My House Without Me, reconstructs the parallel experiences of a German and a Polish woman during and after the Second World War.

Both films rely on the memories of their protagonists. It is commonly understood that human memory is notoriously fallible. These two films do not present memories as completed, recountable histories but as products of mental work, constructed and reworked in dialogues with others and with artefacts.

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