Hanka Nobis receives the Zurich Film Award for Best Director (30.10.2023). Excerpt from the jury statement: The debut film impressively shows, through the development of its young protagonist, that years of polarisation of the political landscape in Poland have led to a division in society. Thus the film becomes not only a sensitive mirror of a young generation, but also a portrait of an entire nation. With exceptional access, an empathetic camera, fluid editing and a musical concept that springs directly from within the youth movements, the filmmaker creates an uncompromising work that raises many questions and opens up a debate that needs to be conducted not only in Poland. Zurich Film Award
One of the most touching and hopeful documentaries in a long time! – ARTTV https://arttv.ch/film/polish-prayers/
A riveting debut – as illuminating as it is shocking. – FILMUFORIA
A powerful and uncompromising work – and a touching debut, intense and profound without being judgmental. – CINEUROPA
As a traditional Catholic in Poland, 22-year-old Antek holds deeply conservative views. But when he falls in love for the first time, he begins to have doubts – first about the prohibition of premarital sex and finally about the existence of God.
The 22-year-old Antek is destined to become the religious leader of the ultra-conservative Polish Brotherhood. The Brotherhood organises counter-demonstrations to LGBTQI+ events and meets for masculinity rituals in the forest. But when Antek is about to be promoted, he begins to question the moral principles he has spent years fighting for.
Over the course of four years, filmmaker Hanka Nobis accompanies the charismatic and sensitive young man, who identifies less and less with traditional values. In exchange with a constantly changing circle of friends, Antek develops his own opinion on what it means to be a good person.