Time To Die


If it hadn’t already been used as the title of one of Chekov’s most beloved short stories, perhaps writer/director Dorota Kedzierzawska would have been better off renaming the admittedly melancholic Time to Die, The Lady With the Dog instead.

Time is bolstered by the feisty, winsome performance by its 91 year old lead actress Danuta Szaflarska as Aniela, a strong-willed woman who adamantly refuses “to go gently into that good night.” With her loyal border collie Phila (short for Philadelphia—possibly a reference to W.C. Fields’ gravestone of “I’d rather be in…”) at her side, Aniela, prefers to spend her days wandering around the sprawling, dusty, overwhelmingly large and slightly dilapidated wooded Warsaw home that was once the setting of grand World War II era parties.

Between spying on her neighbors and sharing nostalgia driven tea (or more accurately liquor) parties reminiscing with her dog, after Aniela discovers that scheming relatives and locals may be in cahoots to inherit her property, the elderly woman realize it’s time to stop living in the past and start planning for the future in order to outwit the others.