While covering a period of 100 years, Polish Migrants in European Film intentionally attempts to bridge the gap between critically acclaimed art cinema productions (such as Roman Polanski’s The Tenant and Jean-Luc Godard’s Passion) and the middle-of-the-road type of genre film (such as melodramas, romantic comedies, thrillers and adventure films). This approach also implies that many of the productions discussed in the book – especially the older ones – are not readily accessible on DVD or through online streaming services. In order to make up for the issue of limited availability, a selection of (audio)visual materials – short clips and stills – is presented below (per chapter).

All efforts have been made to contact copyright holders. If you believe that your work has been posted in a way that constitutes copyright infringement please fill out the contact form.


  • Chapter 1: Introduction: Poles of Attraction (pages 1-17)
  • Chapter 2: From Polish Romanticism to Poland’s Europeanisation: The Cultural Meanings and the Spatiotemporal Dynamics of Migration in the Modern Age (pages 19-36)
  • Chapter 3: Polish Entertainers and Entertaining Polishness: Staging Expatriates in Interwar Cinema (1918-1939) (pages 37-67)
  • Chapter 4: From Expatriation through Defection to Immigration: Polish Characters in Wartime and Cold War Film (1940-1980) (pages 69-116)
  • Chapter 5: Screening (Non-)Solidarity, Now and Before: Polish Immigrants in Late Cold War Film (1980-1989) (pages 117-158)
  • Chapter 6: Building Capitalism with(out) a Human Face: Polish Migrants in Post-Communist Film (1990-2004) (pages 159-203)
  • Chapter 7: Modernisation through Europeanisation? Polish “Free Movers” in Post-Enlargement Film (2005-2017) (pages 205-254)
  • Chapter 8: Conclusion: The Great Emigration(s) Revisited (pages 255-264)


Mania Walkowska’s whereabouts written down on a sheet of paper (Chapter 3, p. 45)

Mania. Ein dramatisch Filmpoem/Mania. A Dramatic Film Poem (Germany 1918, dir. Eugen Illés, scr. Hans Brennert) © Murnau Stiftung

A book with music notes used by the Polish liberation movement to encode secret information (Chapter 3, p. 64)

När millionerna rulla…/When Millions Are Squandered (Sweden 1924, dir. & scr. Ragnar Ring (novel)) © Tullberg-Film

The “cousin from Warsaw” (Elvire Popesco) driving and arriving (Chapter 3, p. 52)

Ma cousine de Varsovie/My Cousin from Warsaw (France/Germany 1931, dir. Carmine Gallone, scr. Louis Verneuil (play), Henri-Georges Clouzot) © Allianz Tonfilm & Société de Films Osso

The “cousin from Warsaw” (Liane Haid) driving and arriving (Chapter 3, p. 64)

Meine Cousine aus Warschau/My Cousin from Warsaw (France/Germany 1931, dir. Carl Boese, scr. Karl Noti, Franz Schulz & Louis Verneuil (play)) © Allianz Tonfilm

The Polish femme fatale Sandra enjoying life at the Côte d’Azur (Chapter 3, p. 58)

Au nom de la loi/In the Name of the Law (France 1932, dir. Maurice Tourneur, scr. Maurice Tourneur & Paul Bringuier (novel)) © Pathé-Natan

Opening credits of Opernring (Chapter 3, p. 48)

Opernring/Opera Ring (Germany 1936, dir. Carmine Gallone, scr. Philipp Lothar Mayring) © Gloria-Film & Horus-Film

Countess Batchevskaia (Elvire Popesco) arriving at home and making a scene (Chapter 3, p. 57)

Ils étaient neuf célibataires/There Were Nine Bachelors (France 1939, dir. & scr. Sacha Guitry) © Gaumont


Jean Kowalski (Jan Kiepura) performing in Polish in a French theatre (Chapter 4, p. 72)

Valse Brillante/Brilliant Waltz (France 1948, dir. Jean Boyer, scr. Gerard Carlier) © Consortium du Film & Vox Films

Captain Ridley’s first encounter with DPs gathered in a German theatre (Chapter 4, p.79)

The Lost People (UK 1949, dir. Muriel Box & Bernard Knowles, scr. Bridget Boland (play)) © Gainsborough Pictures

Captain Ridley’s concluding speech in the German theatre (Chapter 4, p.79)

The Lost People (UK 1949, dir. Muriel Box & Bernard Knowles, scr. Bridget Boland (play)) © Gainsborough Pictures

The Polish exile Cezky playing Chopin’s “Revolutionary Etude” and talking to Countess Lamberti (Chapter 4, p. 94)

Romanticismo (Italy 1949, dir. Clemente Fracassi, scr. Renato Castellani, Fulvio Palmieri & Gerolamo Rovetta (play)) © Ponti-De Laurentiis Cinematografica

Janka’s nervous breakdown in the Italian DP camp (Chapter 4, p. 92)

Donne senza nome/Women Without Names (Italy 1950, dir. Géza von Radványi, scr. Corrado Alvaro, Liana Ferri & Géza von Radványi (story)) © Navona Film

The Swiss administrator of the Pestalozzi “children’s village” announces (on stage) the departure of the Polish orphans (Chapter 4, p. 81)

Sie fanden eine Heimat/The Village (Switzerland/UK 1953, dir. Leopold Lindtberg, scr. Kurt Früh, Elizabeth Montagu, Peter Viertel, Leopold Lindtberg & David Wechsler (novel)) © Praesens-Film

Sergio Gresky and Nadya Ulyanova listen to a Polish record (Chapter 4, p. 95-96)

Prigionieri del male/Prisoners of Evil (Italy/Spain 1955, dir. Mario Costa, scr. Alberto Albani Barbieri, Mario Costa, Aldo De Benedetti, Eduardo Haro & Guido Milanesi (novel)) © Athena Cinematografica & Hesperia Films

Scientist Kudnic smuggled across the Iron Curtain (Chapter 4, p. 83)

Break in the Circle (UK 1955, dir. Val Guest, scr. Val Guest & Philip Loraine (novel)) © Hammer Films

The leader of the Italian gang (Totonno) looks expressively into the camera (while saying “My friend Stefanowski, I have been waiting for you”) (Chapter 4, p. 98)

I magliari/The Swindlers (Italy/France 1959, dir. Francesco Rosi, scr. Suso Cecchi D’Amico, Giuseppe Patroni & Francesco Rosi) © Titanus, Société Générale de Cinématographie & Vides Cinematografica

Crosscutting between the smoke-filled landscapes of North-Rhine-Westphalia and the modern living environment of the Kreuz’s in downtown Berlin (Chapter 4, p. 103)

La voleuse/The Thief (France/West Germany 1966, dir. Jean Chapot, scr. Jean Chapot & Marguerite Duras) © Union Générale Cinématographique, La Société des Films Sirius, Hans Oppenheimer Film, Chronos Films & Procinex

Tadeusz Sobolewski and Lenka Opania flee the Polish People’s Republic (Chapter 4, p. 105)

Verloren maandag/Way Out (Belgium/Netherlands 1974, dir. Luc Monheim, scr. Lodewijk de Boer & Luc Monheim) © Belfilm

Elie in the company of a Polish-speaking nurse in a Swedish mental institution (Chapter 4, p. 108)

Kejsaren/The Emperor (Sweden 1979, dir. Jösta Hagelbäck, scr. Sten Holmberg, Jösta Hagelbäck & Birgitta Trotzig (novel)) ©  Svenska Filminstitutet & Treklövern


Andrzej Kominowski (Daniel Olbrychski) switches on a radio in the Trieste boarding house (Chapter 5, p. 134-135)

Roza (Greece 1982, dir. & scr. Christoforos Christofis) © Creativity Films Hellas & Greek Film Center

Andrzej Kominowski (Daniel Olbrychski) “locked up” in the dark and claustrophobic interior of the Trieste boarding house (Chapter 5, p. 135)

Roza (Greece 1982, dir. & scr. Christoforos Christofis) © Creativity Films Hellas & Greek Film Center

Zosia (Barbara Nielsen) embarks on a plane to Warsaw on December 12, 1981 (Chapter 5, p. 140)

La fiancée qui venait du froid/The Fiancée Who Came In From the Cold (France 1983, dir. & scr.  Charles Nemes) © Ginis Films & Uranium Films

Bogdan (Julien Negulesco) walks through the deserted streets of Ostend on New Year’s Day (Chapter 5, p. 137)

Traversées/Crossings (Tunisia/France/Belgium 1984, dir. Mahmoud Ben Mahmoud, scr. Mahmoud Ben Mahmoud & Philippe Lejuste) © S.A.T.P.E.C. & Marisa Films

Feliks Radziszyński (Daniel Olbrychski) accidentally pierces the former husband of his French spouse (with a sabre) (Chapter 5, p. 143)

Mariage blanc/Paper Marriage (France 1986, dir. Peter Kassovitz, scr. Peter Kassovitz & Elie Pressman) © France 3, Progéfi & Taurus Films

Feliks Radziszyński (Daniel Olbrychski) locked up in a French prison (Chapter 5, p. 144-146)

Mariage blanc/Paper Marriage (France 1986, dir. Peter Kassovitz, scr. Peter Kassovitz & Elie Pressman) © France 3, Progéfi & Taurus Films

“Red” Nadia falling in love with a commercial photographer working for Paris Match (Chapter 5, p. 149)

Rouge baiser/Red Kiss (France/West Germany 1985, dir. Véra Belmont, scr. Véra Belmont, Guy Konopnicki & David Milhaud) © Aldo Lado, C&H-Film Berlin, Farena Films, Films A2 & Stéphan Films

The Polish girl living in one of the Seppan barracks (Chapter 5, p. 148)

Seppan (Sweden 1986, dir. & scr. Agneta Fagerström-Olsson) © MovieMakers & SVT Drama

Close-up of the Polish miner’s identity card (Chapter 5, p. 149)

La leggenda del santo bevitore/The Legend of the Holy Drinker (Italy/France 1988, dir. Ermanno Olmi, scr. Ermanno Olmi, Tullio Kezich & Joseph Roth (novel)) ©  Cecchi Gori Group Tiger Cinematografica, Aura Film & RAI Radiotelevisione Italiana

The Cracow Jazz Ensemble is welcomed at the Polish Club in Newcastle (Chapter 5, p. 152)

Stormy Monday (UK 1988, dir. & scr. Mike Figgis) © The Moving Picture Company Ltd.


The Pole Jerzy cleans up (and diagnoses) after the turbulent “German unification” party (Chapter 6, p. 182)

Willkommen im Paradies/Welcome to Paradise (Germany 1991, dir. Erwin Keusch, scr. Luitgard Paschotta) © Radio Bremen TV

The Polish labour migrant Wojtek (Mirosław Baka) helps out a North African refugee in Germany (Chapter 6, p. 181)

Vaterland/Fatherland (Germany 1992, dir. & scr. Uli M. Schüppel) © Schüppel Films

Construction worker Jacek Kowalski (Zbigniew Zamachowski) smashes a window to save a French old lady from suffocating (Chapter 6, p. 167)

Le clandestin/The Illegal (France 1994, dir.  Jean-Louis Bertuccelli, scr. Daniel Boublil, Sabine Ullmann & Jean-Louis Bertuccelli) © Alya Productions, France 2, France 3 & Télévision Suisse-Romande

The drunk paterfamilias Gunnar delivers a remarkable speech on Christmas eve (Chapter 6, p. 167)

Når nettene blir lange/Cabin Fever (Norway/Sweden/Denmark 2000, dir. & scr. Mona J. Hoel) © Dis film & Freedom From Fear

Polish labour migrant Tomek (Olaf Lubaszenko) and his French lover Viviane (Chapter 6, p. 173)

Les amoureux/The Lovers (France 1994, dir.  Catherine Corsini, scr. Catherine Corsini, Pascale Breton & Arlette Langmann) © Rézo Films & M6 Films

The Polish nurse Krystyna (Dorota Zięciowska) sings, reads and educates in post-unification Berlin (Chapter 6, p. 177)

Herz aus Stein/Heart of Stone (Germany 1995, dir. Nikos Ligouris, scr. Nikos Ligouris & Claus Wilbrandt) © Jost Hering Filmproduktion & Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen

The nostalgic Swedish farmer planning to make moves on the singing Polish girl (Renata Dancewicz) (Chapter 6, p. 179)

Svenska hjaltar/Swedish Heroes (Sweden 1997, dir. Daniel Bergman, scr. Reidar Jonsson) © Det Danske Filminstitut, Nordisk Film- & TV-Fond, Per Holst Filmproduktion, Svensk Filmindustri, Svenska Filminstitutet & TV4 Sweden

Marek & Partners winning the prestigious contract for the town’s new kindergarten (Chapter 6, p. 182)

Was nicht passt, wird passend gemacht/If It Don’t Fit, Use a Bigger Hammer (Germany 2002, dir.  Peter Thorwarth, scr. Mathias Dinter, Martin Ritzenhoff & Peter Thorwarth) © Becker & Häberle Filmproduktion GmbH & Senator Film Produktion

Ewa (Aleksandra Justa) with her daughter and her Austrian partner in a shopping mall (Chapter 6, p. 186)

Struggle (Austria 2003, dir. & scr. Ruth Mader) © Amour Fou Filmproduktion & Struggle Films

Janusz looking at a picture on which he proudly poses in the company of his Polish coworkers at a factory in the People’s Republic (Chapter 6, p. 189)

La ballata dei lavavetri/The Ballad of the Windscreen Washers (Italy 1998, dir.  Peter Del Monte, scr. Peter Del Monte, Sergio Bazzini & Edoardo Albinati (novel)) © PFA Films

One of the Polish sisters ploughing the land by hand (while the Iron Curtain is falling) (Chapter 6, p. 190)

Squillo/Call Girl (Italy 1996, dir. Carlo Vanzina, scr. Carlo Vanzina & Franco Ferrini) © Clemi Cinematografica

Ewa (Agnieszka Czekańska) sings a Polish song for the Italian film crew (Chapter 6, p. 192)

Gli occhi stanchi/Weary Eyes (Italy 1995, dir.  Corso Salani, scr. Corso Salani & Monica Rametta) © Balaton Film

The Polish femmes fatales Ewa and Mila (Chapter 6, p. 193-194)

Sotto falso nome/Under a False Name (Italy/France/Switzerland 2004, dir. Roberto Andò, scr. Roberto Andò & Salvatore Marcarelli) © Vision Productions, Titti Film, Medusa Film, Vega Film & Sirena Film


The British paterfamilias addressing the Polish girl in blood-stained underwear (Chapter 7, p. 213)

Mum & Dad (UK 2008, dir. & scr. Steven Sheil) © 2am Films, EM Media & Film London

Polish producer Jerzy Sturowski (Jerzy Stuhr) is solicited to co-produce a new Italian film (Chapter 7, p. 218)

Il caimano/The Caiman (Italy/France 2006, dir. Nanni Moretti, scr. Nanni Moretti & Heidrun Schleef) © Sacher Film, Bac Films, Stéphan Films & France 3 Cinéma

A French police inspector and a Polish forensic anthropologist (Karolina Gruszka) at work in Bosnia (Chapter 7, p. 219)

Résolution 819/Resolution 819 (France/Italy/Poland 2008, dir. & scr. Giacomo Battiato) © Breakout Films, Aperto Films, TVN, Filmmaster Productions, Sirena Film & Canal+

Polish tourists among the survivors of an avalanche that hits a ski resort in the Tirol Alps (Chapter 7, p. 219)

Die Jahrhundertlawine/Avalanche (Germany/Austria/Poland 2008, dir. Jörg Lühdorff, scr. Walter Kärger & Jurgen Wolff) © Alma Productions, Bavaria Film, Satel Film & TVN

A Polish swimming coach at work in Azerbaijan (Chapter 7, p. 219)

Axinla ashagi/Down the River (Azerbaijan 2014, dir. Asif Rustamov, scr. Otar Pertakhia & Asif Rustamov) © Azerbaijanfilm

Michał (Jakub Gierszał) trains his German speaking skills with a dictaphone (Chapter 7, p. 221)

Beyond Words (Netherlands/Poland 2017, dir. & scr. Urszula Antoniak) © Opus Film & Family Affair Films

Maria (Agnieszka Grochowska) studying “Norwegian behaviour” as a labour migrant in Oslo (Chapter 7, p. 224)

Upperdog (Norway/Germany 2009, dir. & scr. Sara Johnsen) © Friland & Riva Filmproduktion

Maria (Agnieszka Grochowska) comforts Axel while singing a Polish lullaby (Chapter 7, p. 224)

Upperdog (Norway/Germany 2009, dir. & scr. Sara Johnsen) © Friland & Riva Filmproduktion

Celebrating the opening of the Swedish-Polish-Italian joint venture in Sagolandet (Chapter 7, p. 225)

Blåbärskriget/The Blueberry War (Sweden 2007, dir. & scr. Lars-Göran Pettersson) © Mañana Film & Film Form

The scaffold left in place (Chapter 7, p. 226)

Teufel/Devil (Germany 2013, dir. Lisa Bierwirth, scr. Lisa Bierwirth & Hannes Held) © Bierwirth & Zürcher

The Polish builder Mariusz showing his muscles to his son Marek (Chapter 7, p. 212 & 227)

Somers Town (UK 2008, dir.  Shane Meadows, scr. Paul Fraser) © Big Arty Productions, Mother Vision & Tomboy Films

Polish bodybuilders come to Paul’s aid in the locker room of a Dublin gym (Chapter 7, p. 226)

Savage (Ireland 2009, dir. & scr. Brendan Muldowney) © Savage Productions

Lionel announces his upcoming marriage with the Polish au pair Wanda (Alicja Bachleda-Curuś) (Chapter 7, p. 228)

Comme des voleurs (à l’est)/Stealth (Switzerland 2006, dir. & scr. Lionel Baier) © Saga-Productions

The ruffled-haired Polish backpacker Boris flanked by the German Jonas and the Brit Philip (Chapter 7, p. 229)

You & I (Germany 2014, dir. & scr. Nils Bökamp) ©  Salzgeber & Company Medien, Boekamp & Kriegsheim

The German real estate agent Thies (on the left) reminds the Pole Bruno of his sexual orientation (Chapter 7, p. 231)

Die Geschwister/The Siblings (Germany 2016, dir. Jan Krüger, scr. Jan Krüger & Anke Stelling) © Schramm Film Koerner & Weber, Tempus Film & Westdeutscher Rundfunk

A Dublin real estate agent leaves the country while a Polish-Serbian couple wait for their relatives at the airport (Chapter 7, p. 233-234)

Keys to the City (Ireland 2012, dir. Christopher Brennan, Mel Cannon & Laura Way, scr. James Fair, Conor Horgan & Conor McDermottroe) © Filmbase

The Polish handyman Jerzy (Andrzej Chyra) right before being killed by Marie (Chapter 7, p. 233)

Mörkt vatten/I Am Handyman (Sweden 2012, dir. Rafael Edholm, scr. Rafael Edholm, Daga Edholm, Björn Olofsson & Paolo Vacirca) © Holding Hands Production & Svensk Filmindustri