Zanussi, a poet in the likes of Wajda, belongs to the technological generation.
A scientist according to him is the key person in modern society. Illumination
is an attempt to analyze the state of moral science, its application and its effects
on the end users.
The director concentrates on the life of this young hero who has had a lot going
on with him. The accounts of his university education, his climbing expeditions,
his encounter with a mature mistress and the killing of his friend are some of
the few instances portrayed in the film to show what goes in an average person's
life. Added to that, the director shows several other aspects of this particular
person, like his army training, a shotgun wedding, and his joy and awesome fascination
when he is waiting for his first child.
During the incidents of his life, the story projects the way people deal with
whatever goes on around them. There are lighter moments, too, with the family
spending some quality time beside a lake. Towards the end of the movie, the entire
narration is on the lines of how everyone has to accept the fact that we ought
to get old. It's the mysteries of growing up and not the childhood that have been
given vital concern.
The film is an illumination of the happenings in a person's life from when he
starts with his teen life to the time that he reaches his middle age. It is a
story that relates to each one of us, almost in every aspect, though we might
have had these situations on a different level.
Direction & Screenplay: Krzysztof Zanussi
Cinematography: Edward Klosinski
Music: Wojciech Kilar