"Nosferatu. The Fearful Dictator"

- two channel film installation, 2011

Part 1: Berlin, 30 min. (first screening: 14.05.2011, Museum Night, Gallery Arsenał, Białystok)
Part 2: Warschau, 34 min. (first screening: June 2011)

Jacek Malinowski: script, directing, camera, editing
Actors: Sean Palmer (Nosferatu) and: Małgorzata Jeleniewicz, Jagna Olejnikowska, Marta Wójcicka, Adam Wrzosek, Michał Krawczyk
Producers: Jacek Malinowski, Małgorzata Ignatowska
Collaborators: Małgorzata Ignatowska, Janina Dybowska, Paweł Uszyński, Agata Lewandowska, Grzegorz Jach, Jan Put, Robert Maciejuk
Music: Tomasz Banul fragment of the song "A poem for Betty".
The project has been executed between 2009-2011

About the project:

"Nosferatu. The Fearful Dictator"
is a video-remake, inspired by the two classic horror movies based upon Bram Stoker's "Dracula": "Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens" by Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau (1922) and "Nosferatu. Phantom der Nacht", by Werner Herzog (1979).

Film drastically reduces the original story, focusing just on it's two major elements: the leading character's look and behavior and the opening scene: the scene of property purchase. Film also selectively uses traditional features of horror as a movie kind, switching much more towards the other format such as documentary. The many historical references included in the plot, serve the film's main premise which is the search for "the other kind of horror" that can be found in reality, history and tradition... and also to the idea of giving credibility to what remains unbelievable.

"Nosferatu. The Fearful Dictator" consists of two equivalent parts:

Part 1: "Berlin" is a "silent" so to speak movie, shot in November 2009 in Berlin. It refers to Murnau's classic film mostly by the visual style of cinematography, reflecting the mood of German expressionism of the 1920-ties. This part is only hypothetically mute - we hear the rhythm of main character's walking as well as the sound of big city's awakening. Nosferatu (played by Sean Palmer, a british actor based in Warsaw) is filmed in a special setting: between concrete blocks of famous Berlin Holocaust Memorial. Nosferatu is there, walking between the stones. Being a symbol, he examines a space that is equally symbolic: he penetrates that space, he lurks there or he hides in there. Thirty minutes of projection shows him emerging from the darkness. First frames - shot in complete darkness - gradually uncover not just the person but most of all - the location. Film ends up with illumination of the dawn. The question remains if the daylight kills the monster or not?

Part 2: "Warschau" has both: verbal and visual narration. Everything takes place in Warsaw / Poland in the hideout of the main character - a dark living-block apartment. Light successively unveils details of interior and the stuff in there. Light uncovers the face of the monster speaking to the camera. The conversation sounds weird: many lines and no feedback. Nosferatu speaks to nobody. The eye of the camera is the one who listens, though never talks back. In this simulated dialog, there is no chronology of facts. Instead there are reflections on space, traveling... on love to war, blood and monstrosity.

Stills from: Nosferatu. The Fearful Dictator. Berlin.