Retrospective 2019

Błękitny krzyż

Men of Blue Cross
Andrzej Munk
PL 1955
55 min

Above all, BLEKITNY KRZYZ is a tragic reminder of the considerable loss to international film history represented by the premature death of Andrzej Munk, one of the foremost cinematic poets and innovators of the Polish People’s Republic. Trained as a documentary filmmaker, Munk carried his passion for the real into his first fiction feature with typical intensity. BLEKITNY KRZYZ is ostensibly a straightforward celebration of the bravery of Polish partisan forces, more specifically the mountain rangers that went by the name of the Blue Cross and patrolled the Tatra Mountains on the border between Poland and Slovakia. At some point close to the end of the war, a partisan hospital behind enemy lines on the Slovak side finds itself threatened by an imminent German attack. The Blue Cross comes to the rescue, transporting incapacitated Slovak partisans to safe haven in Poland. Munk complicates this tale of international antifascist solidarity by introducing two original elements to the mix. His partisan skiers are not professional actors, but rather professional mountaineers, some of them even former members of the Blue Cross, as such granting the film an unparalleled level of documentary authenticity. Furthermore, in his attempt to reconstruct Operation Tatra Mountain Rescue and in a manner that would make Werner Herzog proud, Munk pushed his experienced cast and crew through the breathtakingly beautiful and treacherous mountain passes for real, delivering extraordinary images of true courage.

In the presence of Kristaq Mitro and Elena Kadare.


  • Gustaw Holoubek
  • Stanisław Gąsienica-Byrcyn
  • Stanisław Wawrytko
  • Stanisław Marusarz
  • Wojciech Siemion
  • Andrzej Munk
  • Adam Liberak
  • Sergiusz Sprudin
  • Jadwiga Zajiček
  • Jan Krenz
Wytwórnia Filmów Dokumentalnych i Fabularnych
35 mm
Related Movies