Domini Doerr

Written by Domini Doerr

Published: 06 Oct 2023

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith


Released in 1988, “A Short Film About Killing” is a Polish psychological drama directed by Krzysztof Kie?lowski. The movie explores the themes of justice, morality, and the consequences of taking a life. With its thought-provoking narrative and powerful performances, “A Short Film About Killing” has earned critical acclaim and cemented its place as a classic in world cinema. In this article, we will delve deep into the movie and uncover 49 fascinating facts that every movie buff should know. From behind-the-scenes trivia to insightful anecdotes about the cast and crew, we will leave no stone unturned in our exploration of this gripping film. So, grab your popcorn and prepare to dive into the world of “A Short Film About Killing.

Key Takeaways:

  • A Short Film About Killing, a 1988 Polish drama, challenges viewers to question justice and morality while delving into the darkness within human nature.
  • Through its powerful imagery and thought-provoking themes, A Short Film About Killing leaves a lasting impression, sparking deep introspection and conversation about the complexities of the human condition.
Table of Contents

A Short Film About Killing was released in 1988.

Directed by Krzysztof Kie?lowski, this Polish drama film was a part of his renowned “Dekalog” series, which consisted of ten films exploring moral and ethical dilemmas.

The movie was originally titled “Krótki film o mi?o?ci” in Polish.

Translated as “A Short Film About Love,” the title highlights the central theme of love and its various interpretations throughout the film.

A Short Film About Killing was awarded the Jury Prize at the 1988 Cannes Film Festival.

Due to its powerful and provocative portrayal of violence and justice, the film captivated the audience and critics alike, earning prestigious recognition at the renowned festival.

The movie explores the darkness within human nature.

A Short Film About Killing delves into the depths of human emotions and the capacity for violence that exists within individuals.

It raises profound questions about the nature of justice.

The film challenges viewers to question conventional notions of right and wrong, prompting introspection into the complexities of justice and its subjective interpretation.

A Short Film About Killing confronts the moral consequences of death penalty.

The protagonist’s conflicted journey explores the ethical implications of state-sanctioned executions and the impact it has on individuals involved.

Kie?lowski uses striking visual compositions to enhance the storytelling.

The director’s artistic vision is evident in the cinematography which captures the bleakness and despair of the characters’ lives, intensifying the emotional impact of the narrative.

The film features minimal dialogue, relying on powerful imagery to convey its message.

Through deliberate silence and evocative shots, A Short Film About Killing invites viewers to interpret and engage with the story on a deeper level.

The performances in the film are hauntingly realistic.

The actors bring an authenticity to their roles, capturing the pain, anguish, and desperation of their characters with an intensity that lingers long after the credits roll.

A Short Film About Killing explores the themes of alienation and loneliness.

The characters in the film struggle with profound feelings of isolation, highlighting the universal human experiences of longing for connection and navigating through solitude.

The cinematography uses a color palette that reflects the bleakness of the characters’ lives.

A muted and desaturated color scheme creates a sense of suffocating despair, immersing the audience in the stark reality of the film’s world.

The movie raises questions about the inherent violence within society.

A Short Film About Killing examines the ways in which society perpetuates and normalizes violence, challenging viewers to reflect on their own complicity in such a system.

The soundtrack of the film heightens the tension and atmosphere.

Featuring haunting and atmospheric compositions, the music in A Short Film About Killing enhances the emotional impact and adds to the overall sense of unease.

The film masterfully captures the nuances of human behavior.

Kie?lowski skillfully portrays the complexities and contradictions of human nature, showcasing the fragility and vulnerability that coexist with our capacity for cruelty.

A Short Film About Killing is a thought-provoking and emotionally challenging cinematic experience.

Through its powerful storytelling and impactful performances, the film invites deep introspection and leaves a lasting impression on those who watch it.

The movie’s powerful imagery lingers in the mind of the viewers.

The visually striking scenes and symbolism employed in A Short Film About Killing leave a lasting imprint, continuing to provoke thoughts and discussion long after the film ends.

The movie gained international acclaim for its bold and unflinching portrayal of violence.

Kie?lowski’s uncompromising approach to depicting the harsh realities of life garnered praise from critics and elevated the film to a status of cinematic importance.

The film’s non-linear narrative adds layers of complexity to the storytelling.

By weaving between different timelines and perspectives, A Short Film About Killing challenges the audience’s perception of cause and effect, unfolding the story in a fragmented yet deeply engaging manner.

The use of long takes in the film intensifies the tension.

Kie?lowski utilizes extended shots to create a sense of unease and allow the audience to immerse themselves in the unfolding events, amplifying the emotional impact of key moments.

A Short Film About Killing highlights the inescapable cycle of violence.

The film demonstrates how violence begets more violence, painting a grim picture of a world where justice becomes synonymous with vengeance.

The movie’s portrayal of justice challenges the notion of moral absolutes.

Kie?lowski presents a morally complex world where actions are not easily categorizable as right or wrong, forcing the audience to confront their own beliefs and preconceptions.

A Short Film About Killing incorporates elements of film noir.

The use of chiaroscuro lighting, morally ambiguous characters, and a dark and oppressive atmosphere are reminiscent of the classic noir genre.

The film’s pacing adds to the sense of unease and discomfort.

Kie?lowski’s deliberate pacing and the gradual unraveling of the narrative build tension and create a disquieting cinematic experience.

A Short Film About Killing continues to resonate with audiences decades after its release.

The film’s exploration of violence, justice, and the complexities of the human condition ensures its enduring relevance and impact.

The movie challenges viewers to confront their own morality and ethics.

A Short Film About Killing prompts introspection and provokes conversation around the moral boundaries society constructs and the consequences of our choices.

The film received widespread critical acclaim for its artistic merits.

Renowned film critics praised A Short Film About Killing for its powerful storytelling, thought-provoking themes, and masterful execution.

The performances in the film are raw and impactful.

The actors bring depth and authenticity to their roles, giving life to the characters and eliciting strong emotional responses from the audience.

A Short Film About Killing was a critical and commercial success.

The film resonated with audiences worldwide, attracting both arthouse cinema enthusiasts and mainstream viewers.

The movie serves as a poignant commentary on society’s treatment of marginalized individuals.

Kie?lowski sheds light on the harsh realities faced by those on the fringes of society, prompting reflection on the systems of oppression and inequality.

A Short Film About Killing showcases Kie?lowski’s mastery of visual storytelling.

Through his precise framing and composition, the director creates a visual language that enhances the narrative and deepens the film’s impact.

The film’s title becomes intriguing and enigmatic upon deeper reflection.

A Short Film About Killing raises questions about the nature of violence, the brevity of life, and the complex motivations behind acts of killing.

A Short Film About Killing demands active engagement from its audience.

It challenges viewers to confront uncomfortable truths and explore the ethical dilemmas presented throughout the film.

The movie’s exploration of human psychology is both haunting and profound.

Kie?lowski delves into the darkest corners of the human mind, examining the motivations and repercussions of actions driven by anger, fear, and desperation.

A Short Film About Killing serves as a testament to the enduring power of cinema as an art form.

The film’s ability to provoke thought and elicit strong emotional responses showcases the unique ability of movies to impact and shape our understanding of the world.

The film’s success paved the way for Kie?lowski’s subsequent international acclaim.

A Short Film About Killing solidified the director’s reputation as a master storyteller, leading to further recognition for his later works.

The movie remains an important work in the Polish New Wave cinema movement.

A Short Film About Killing contributed to the resurgence of Polish filmmaking in the 1980s, establishing a distinct voice within the global cinematic landscape.

A Short Film About Killing challenges the audience’s expectations.

It subverts traditional narrative structures and avoids easy resolutions, leaving room for interpretation and encouraging active participation in the storytelling process.

The film’s impact extends beyond its immediate narrative.

It prompts contemplation on broader themes of life, death, morality, and the human condition, transcending its specific context to resonate on a universal level.

A Short Film About Killing is a defining work in Krzysztof Kie?lowski’s filmography.

It exemplifies his unique storytelling style and his ability to tackle profound philosophical themes with depth, sensitivity, and artistic finesse.

The movie’s stark realism leaves an indelible impression on the viewer.

Through its unflinching portrayal of violence and its devastating consequences, A Short Film About Killing challenges the audience to confront the harsh realities of the world we live in.

The film’s use of long, uninterrupted shots creates a sense of voyeurism.

The camera lingers on the characters, exposing their vulnerabilities and inviting the audience to witness the unfolding tragedy with an uncomfortable intimacy.

A Short Film About Killing showcases the power of cinema as a medium of social commentary.

By shedding light on the darkest aspects of human nature, the film invites reflection and sparks conversations about the state of society and the role of justice.

The movie’s existential undertones leave a lasting impact.

A Short Film About Killing raises questions about the meaning of life, the inevitability of death, and the fragile balance between hope and despair.

The film’s impressive performances bring the characters to life.

The actors deliver emotionally charged portrayals, capturing the essence of their respective roles and drawing viewers into the complex emotional landscape of the narrative.

A Short Film About Killing remains a relevant and timeless exploration of the human condition.

Its themes of violence, justice, and morality continue to resonate in a world grappling with similar ethical dilemmas and societal challenges.

The movie’s unflinching depiction of violence is central to its message.

A Short Film About Killing forces the audience to confront the consequences and realities of violence, urging a deeper examination of its impact on individuals and society.

The film presents a damning critique of the dehumanizing effects of violence.

By portraying acts of brutality and their aftermath, A Short Film About Killing highlights the indiscriminate nature of violence and its ability to strip away humanity.

A Short Film About Killing creates a lasting impression through its powerful symbolism.

From recurring visual motifs to metaphorical representations, the film skillfully uses symbolism to enhance its thematic exploration and engage the audience on a deeper level.

The impact of A Short Film About Killing extends far beyond its runtime.

Its thought-provoking themes, powerful imagery, and challenging portrayal of violence leave a lasting imprint on the viewer, making it a truly remarkable and unforgettable cinematic experience.


In conclusion, “A Short Film About Killing” is a thought-provoking and emotionally resonant movie that delves into complex themes of morality, justice, and the consequences of our actions. With its powerful storytelling, exceptional performances, and masterful direction, the film captivates audiences and leaves a lasting impact.

The movie’s exploration of the dark side of human nature and the potential for violence serves as a haunting reminder of the moral dilemmas we often face in our society. Its stark and gritty visual style heightens the tension and enhances the overall cinematic experience.

A Short Film About Killing is a standout film in the world of cinema, acclaimed for its bold and uncompromising approach. Whether you are a fan of thought-provoking dramas or simply appreciate the art of filmmaking, this movie is a must-watch.


Q: What is the plot of “A Short Film About Killing”?

A: “A Short Film About Killing” tells the story of a young drifter who brutally murders a taxi driver. The film explores the consequences of this act, following the killer’s trial and examining the moral implications of capital punishment.

Q: Is “A Short Film About Killing” based on a true story?

A: No, the movie is not based on a true story. However, it is inspired by the social and political climate of Poland during the 1980s, where capital punishment was still enforced. The director, Krzysztof Kieslowski, uses the film as a commentary on justice and the inherent brutality within society.

Q: Is “A Short Film About Killing” a standalone film or part of a series?

A: “A Short Film About Killing” is part of Krzysztof Kieslowski’s famed “Dekalog” series, which consists of ten standalone films based on the Ten Commandments. Each film explores the moral complexities of the commandments in a thought-provoking and captivating way.

Q: Are there any graphic scenes in “A Short Film About Killing”?

A: Yes, the movie contains some graphic scenes, particularly during the murder and execution sequences. These scenes are integral to the film’s narrative and thematic exploration, but viewer discretion is advised.

Q: Is “A Short Film About Killing” available to stream online?

A: “A Short Film About Killing” may be available to stream on various platforms, such as popular streaming services or rental platforms. It is recommended to check with your preferred streaming site for availability.

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