|Richard Brzostek - 08/11/2006
Jerzy Hoffman brings to film "Beautiful Stranger" (Piekna Nieznajoma), the novel written by Aleksei Tolstoy. It is a spy film set in 1917. The story is of a young Russian lieutenant on a mission to deliver some documents to Sweden. His journey by train is not uneventful, as a beautiful stranger (Grazyna Szapolowska) makes his trip very interesting.
Lieutenant Nikita Obozow, as played by Wojciech Malajkat, is brave, yet a bit timid with women. He quickly meets the woman in the next cabin, which results in a strange romance. They both like each other, but Nikita is reluctant to make advances. It is intriguing to see what the woman's game is and who she really is, as the stranger is also more than he bargains for.
With encounters in the dinning car and in the hallway, the romance between the lieutenant and the stranger develops. The tension between the two builds, which leads to some erotic moments such as when she goes into the bathroom between their two rooms to take a shower so he can see her silhouette on the frosted glass. The stranger is beautiful, she has a sting, and as much as the lieutenant may like to think he is in control, he isn't, as he fell for her. Their romance is not a fairy tale romance, but one that is realistic.
Hoffman did an exceptional job presenting the story of "Beautiful Stranger." The story itself and the interconnection of details make the film itself beautiful. I would say it is on par with his film "Znachor" and may appeal most to those that like a sophisticated drama. It is a captivating story worth watching.
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