Forbidden Songs

Leonard Buczkowski

Poland, 1947


The action takes place from September 1939 up until the liberation of Warsaw in 1945. Roman Tokarski, a musician, tells about the German occupation of the city. In that period he performed with a street orchestra that played a patriotic song Warszawianka  (The Song of Warsaw). He was also, together with his sister, a member of an underground organization and took part in partisans’ combat actions and the Warsaw Uprising. The central theme is intertwined with episodes of life in occupied Warsaw telling the stories of the street singers, a hiding Jew and a young female Volksdeutsche. All those episodes are connected by the songs.


Leonard Buczkowski

Leonard Buczkowski (1900-1967) made his debut in 1928 with a silent film „Szaleńcy” (“Madmen”, alternative title: „My pierwsza brygada” – “We, the First Brigade”) whose action takes place against a background of events concerning the marching out of the Polish Legions from Cracow in 1914. Before the outbreak of the second world war he made also the following films: “The Starry Squadron” (Polish: “Gwiaździsta eskadra”) – one of the first Polish films concerning aviation,

– “Szyb L-23” (“The Shaft L-23”), whose action takes place among the working class,

– „Rapsodia Bałtyku” (“Baltic Rapsody”) – a spectacular marine drama,

– „The Haunted Manor” (Polish: “Straszny dwór”) – based on Moniuszko’s opera.

– “The Faithful River” (Polish: “Wierna rzeka”) – based on Żeromski’s novel,

– “Florian” – based on Maria Rodziewiczówna’s novel,

– “Biały murzyn” (“White Negro”) – a modernized adaptation of Michał Bałucki’s novel.

The post-war debut of Buczkowski was a short quasi-documentary titled “Łódź 1939-1945” that presented scenes from the occupied city from a very short temporal perspective.

Buczkowski was also the director of the first Polish post-war comedy „Skarb” (“Treasure” –1949). In 1954 he directed the first Polish colour film „Przygoda na Mariensztacie” (“The Mariensztat Adventure”).


1966 Marysia i Napoleon
1964 Przerwany lot
1963 Smarkula
1961 Czas przeszly
1959 Orzel
1958 Deszczowy lipiec
1956 Sprawa pilota Maresza
1954 Przygoda na Mariensztacie
1951 Pierwszy start
1949 Skarb (as Marian Leonard)
1947 Zakazane piosenki
1946 W chlopskie rece
1945 Lódz 1939-1945
1942 Testament profesora Wilczura
1939 Bialy Murzyn
1938 Florian
1936 Straszny dwór
1936 Wierna rzeka
1935 Rapsodia Baltyku
1932 Szyb L-23
1930 Gwiazdzista eskadra
1928 Szalency


Director: Leonard Buczkowski

Writing Credits: Ludwik Starski

Art Direction: Adolf Forbert, Karol Chodura

Music: Roman Palester

Production management: Francizek Petersile

Duration: 97’

Color: Black & White

Danuta Szaflarska as Halina Tokarska
Jerzy Duszynski as Roman Tokarski
Jan Swiderski as Ryszard
Janina Ordezanka as Halina and Roman’s mother
Jan Kurnakowicz as Cieslak


Danuta Szaflarska Extract from the project „Lakowa 29″ published by Fabryka Snow (Toya sp. z o.o.)

Dorota Golebiowska, Zakazane piosenki (1946)

Jerzy Eisler“Zakazane Piosenki” – from the monthly magazine “”/ June 2012

Zbigniew Pitera,  Jak powstaly Zakazane piosenki[in:] „Przeminelo z filmem.” Warsaw 1987).,75410,17415965,Jubilatka_stulatka_Danuta_Szaflarska_wspomina_filmowy.html?disableRedirects=true



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