IDA (2013)



  • Best Cinematography – Lukasz Zal and Ryszard Lenczewski
  • Best Foreign Language Film – Pawel Pawlikowski


We watched this movie based off the Oscars but also cause a friend recommend it to us. And FINALLY, we get back into a great Oscar nomination. Kind of to the point where I have no idea why this isn’t nominated for Best Picture over more than half the nominations. Ida is fantastic and it brings a lot of elements to the table. It’s like this movie was directed by Bergman and Jarmusch.

The movie is very quiet but what stands out the most is the cinematography. Everything looks so beautiful and almost everything looks like a well-composed photograph. No person is ever really placed in the center of the screen. There are multiple shots where individuals dwell in the corners of a shot and when emotions run extra high, faces are sometimes cut in half so you can only see the eyes of the actors. And that is completely fine cause this movie easily captures how everyone is feeling and thinking, for the most part. It’s the exact opposite of The Theory of Everything. You actually hear how people feel from the characters. You know why events are happening cause everyone lets you know what their motivation is. It’s fantastic! (Also no montages which was really nice!!!!)

I think this might be my favorite Oscar movie yet, maybe even more than Birdman and Grand Budapest. Definitely watch this if you love movies, it’s on Netflix and a few other streaming sites right now so it’s easy to see.


A lot of fuss has been made over the 2015 Oscar nominees being extremely male and extremely white. And for good reason, especially once you start watching the nominees back to back like we have. I have to say, at this point I’m getting real sick of watching “brilliant” men and their flaws and the women who just react to them. All of the movies we’ve watched so far have been men, men, men, men, more men. And while Ida doesn’t do anything for the white criticism that the nominations have gotten, it blows all that man bullshit out of the water.

In fact, we figured out that if there were a reverse Bechdel test, Ida would fail. By that I mean Ida never has two men speaking to each other. It’s kind of incredible, and really refreshing. I obviously don’t have anything against movies about men, because if I did I wouldn’t be able to watch anything. But it’s just so nice for men to not be the focus for once.

I loved Ida. If I didn’t know any better (and thought Polish was Swedish) I would have said this was a Criterion-restored Ingmar Bergman movie. It’s just so beautiful, and looks beautiful in black and white in a way that I thought only Bergman could really do. But what I loved the most was Ida herself and her story. In the end, Ida makes all of her own decisions. They may not have been my decisions had I been in the same situation, but she’s under the influence of pretty much no one by the end of the movie and chooses her fate. Considering her character is an almost-nun (are you a nun before you take final vows?), the fact that Ida actually turns out to be really independent makes not only her character that much more interesting, but it makes you believe that she actually wants to be a nun, and didn’t just run out of options.

Ida was such a nice break from the other Oscar movies we’ve been watching. It’s such a stark contrast to the other movies and their characters, it really makes me ache for more good female-driven movies.


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