POLISH PATRIOTISM, OR "PATRIOTIC LESSON" BY FILIP JACOBSON
"Patriotic Lesson" by Filip Jacobson is no longer than 20 minutes. The author of the film gives voice to the children from primary school, who participate in the 6th City Patriotic Poetry and Song Contest.
We observe the children, dressed in their best clothes, dark school uniforms, white shirts. During their performances, they sing solemn songs and recite poems in memory of their beloved homeland. All the time, the children are accompanied by the world of the adults, at the beginning and at the end of the film, we watch the conversations and sessions of the jury, the contest starts with a lofty speech about personal responsibility for independence, given by one of the educators. Everything that we see is somehow serious, sad and devoid of colours (it is not a coincidence that the film is black and white).. A smile appears occasionally on our face, once, when the microphones stop working during one of the song performances, and again, when one of the contest participants, with an old rifle under her arm, dressed up as a partisan, sings the popular song from the opening credits of the film "How I Unleashed World War II."
The strength of the film by Jacobson is that the author does not impose his commentary on the viewers, there is no proposition which is forced upon us. We can judge the situations which we see on our own. The documentary film seems to be made with such lightness and ease that we do not feel the weight of the construction invented here. So, we watch the black and white images, and the questions arise in our mind, what does patriotism mean to us? Only a contest, in which what counts is the award, or yet another sad and boring school ceremony? What colours does our Polish patriotism have?