Home Movies by Decade Movies - 1960s Saragossa Manuscript, The (1965)

Saragossa Manuscript, The (1965)

Based on the 1813 novel by Jan Potocki, this is a complex and exhilarating film that ranks among the most remarkable achievements of 1960s European cinema.

Beginning in the Peninsular War, the action shifts, via the pages of a gloriously illustrated tome, to a dazzling compendium of interweaving stories.

Zbigniew Cybulski’s Walloon guardsman meets with two Muslim princesses, a hermit, a possessed lunatic, a cabalist, a rationalist philosopher, a gypsy and an Inquisitor.

Played to the haunting strains of Krzysztof Penderecki’s score, this is a highly stylised, darkly surreal exploration of such themes as the capriciousness of nature, authority and, above all, love.

Capt Alfons van Worden
Zbigniew Cybulski
Kazimierz Opalinski
Princess Emina
Iga Cembrzynska
Princess Zibelda
Joanna Jedryka
van Worden’s father
Slawomir Linder
van Worden’s mother
Miroslawa Lombardo
Franciszek Pieczka
Spanish nobleman
Aleksander Fogiel

Wojciech Has