Cisiecki eschews a traditional narrative for a series of short segments—the longest takes place in a room in the same chain as Lynch’s lodge from “Twin Peaks”—and binds it all together with this cassette tape playing.
Smoke opens a lot better than it finishes. Cisiecki’s static composition is fantastic and the first minute or two of the film is nothing but those shots. Then he introduces movement. I’m not sure if it was the transfer from film to video or if it looked as rough originally, but any shot where the camera moves is awful and any shot with movement in it is generally not good.
Cisiecki seems to be a believer of tone over content and, in those terms, Smoke is reasonably successful (if basically just regurgitated Lynch). But there’s nothing compelling about it after the first minute or two.
Still, it’s short and the music’s perfect.
Written and directed by Grzegorz Cisiecki; director of photography, Dawid Rymar; edited by Grzegorz Cisiecki and Cecylja Pacura; music by Rashid Brocca and Aleksandr Poroch; production designer, Maciej Bieganski; produced by Justyna Siedmiogrodzka and Norbert Nowak; released by PWSFTviT.
Starring Marta Szumiel, Grzegorz Golaszewski, Oriana Soika, Bartlomej Nowosielski, Katarzyna Dalek, Hubert Jarczak, Malgorzata Kocik, Mark Malak and Krzysztof Wach.