Beautiful Polish actress Lucyna Winnicka 1928-2013
Beautiful Polish actress Lucyna Winnicka
Born July 14, 1928 in Warsaw, Polish actress Lucyna Winnicka was the wife of the director Jerzy Kawalerowicz, and became known mainly through his films.
Lucyna Winnicka graduated from high school in the year of the end of the war. After six years of horrors, deaths and pain in the destroyed Warsaw, life began again. Lucyna entered the university, the Faculty of Law. Why Law? Like many graduates, she herself did not know why. Somewhere you had to do something, but the real calling was determined much later. So, in 1950, Lucyna received a master’s degree in law and … realized that trying to prove herself in the law does not make sense. By this time she was already a student of the Higher School of Theater.
Three years later, a young actress began to work in Stettin. She successfully performed in plays “Their Four”, “To the South of the 38th Parallel”, “Big Man with Small Interests”. And soon there was a film debut. Jerzy Kawalerowicz was directing a big two-part film “Cellulose” on the novel of the Polish writer Igor Neverly. In the second part, entitled “Under the Phrygian Star”, next to the protagonist appeared the Communist girl Magda, his future wife. Grace, tenderness, sparkling laughter of Winnicka added “forbidden” poetry to the realistically harsh style of the work on the class struggle. Then more than once wrote that the role of Magda – the most interesting post-war actor’s work in Poland. Lucyna Winnicka already in the first film proved to be a mature master.
Disputes on the set did not prevent the director and actress from getting married. They continued to work together. Winnicka is the heroine of almost all Kawalerowicz’s films. In 1957 she played Rosa in “The Real End of the Great War” (in Russian box office “It’s impossible to forget this”). The role was complicated. The injuries inflicted by the war refracted in the psychic life of two tortured people. Each of them is both an executioner and a victim. The tragic dumbness of the hero, crippled in fascist concentration camps, was to some extent an allegory. Between the wife and her husband, who had been passionately fond of each other, the war was over. War – separation, loneliness, other people, and displacing the past. War is cruelty. And war is unhappiness, leaving a black trace. Lucyna Winnicka did not judge the heroine, who fell in love with another person. The actress’s play was surprisingly rich, showed beyond the female drama. The actress showed the hopelessness of self-denial. And at the same time, with no less force, the impossibility of selfish happiness.
The theme, later developed by Kawalerowicz and Winnicka in Mother Joan, – the redemption of another’s guilt, the involvement of witnesses and the victims of evil, committed in the world. Lyutsina Winnicka has a strong personality, her own style, a special and in some ways unchanging manner of execution. But her heroines are very different. Multifacetedness, complexity – the quality of great talent. The actress likes to find in herself the traits of people who seemingly are not close to her in spirit, worldview, and character. “I like to play roles that are “contraindicated” to me,” she says.
In the “Train” (1959), Winnicka’s heroine is again a young girl, Martha. The actress loved this role more than others. Maybe because here the acting problem was very difficult.
Kawalerowicz directed a complex film, the theme of which he himself defined as the “hunger of feelings.” People can not express what overwhelms them. The film’s heroes part ways when the journey ends. Nevertheless, Winnicka does not consider such ending a vague or pessimistic. “I’m alone, but I’m really happy,” Martha says goodbye. Before getting off the train, she already overcame her pain about the past, found herself in peace of mind. “The train” was a great success. Polish viewers recognized it as the best film in 1959. Lucyna Winnicka received an international award for the role of Martha at the Venice Film Festival.
The responses caused by this film have not yet decayed when a new work by Kavalerovich appeared: “Mother Joan of the Angels” (1961, according to the story of Jarosław Iwaszkiewicz). The viewers admired the strict beauty, and concentration of intellectual atmosphere. To many it seemed incomprehensible, even painful. It was embarrassing that the old legend of the devil, who had settled in nuns, is so clearly and intentionally detached from the everyday signs of any era. In the film there is no color, no details of the Middle Ages, as, however, there is no domestic modernization. And what is happening in it, is simply withdrawn from historical time or, rather, raised above it.
At the Cannes Film Festival, the film Mother Joan of the Angels received a special jury prize. Winnicka, the main actress, shared the “Crystal Star” – honorary prize of the French Film Academy with Jeanne Moreau. In addition, at home, she became the best actress of the year, and Jerzy Kawalerowicz – the best director. One of the Polish critics called it a work about modern Faust. About Faust, who has the devil and God in himself.
In one of her films – “The Diary of Pani Hanka” (directed by Stanislav Lenartovich, 1963) – the actress performs the opposite task. In particular, she plays a carefree, charming fool, a secular moth, burned in the fire of war. She plays so easily, naturally, with such penetration into the character that you involuntarily applaud: Vinnitsa is amazing here.