Knife in the Water (1962)

Knife in the Water (1962) Roman Polanski’s first feature film—a psychological thriller. It’s considered one of his best films and I’d have to agree.

A Polish couple picks up a student hitchhiker and invites him to go sailing with them for the weekend on their yacht. Most of the film takes place on this yacht and the follows the three characters over a 24 hour period.

The camera work is beautifully done in black and white (1:33:1 aspect ratio). The jazz score gives it a real 60s feel that I really liked.

The actress in the film had the perfect look of the character but she wasn’t a trained actor. To get her to jump and look surprised in one scene, Polanksi had an assistant fire a flare gun behind her and just off camera.

The extras on this Criterion Collection disc are worth watching if you enjoyed this film. Polanski explains how he likes a steady camera shot which was a real challenge during the filming of Knife if the Water (shot mostly on the water). Apparently Polanski can’t stand the Dogma film movement and had this to say about it:

I’m allergic to Dogma, all that shaky camera nonsense. It looks like the cameraman has Parkinson’s Disease, or maybe while filming he’s masturbating.

Roman knows what he likes!

Posted in DVD Reviews at 5:13 PM