Nightmares (1979)

Original Title: Zmory

Nightmares (1979)
Director: Wojciech Marczewski
Historical Drama / Coming-of-Age / Political Drama / Social Commentary / Family Drama / Romantic Elements / Period Piece

Top Cast:

  • Piotr Lysak
  • Tomasz Hudziec
  • Hanna Skarzanka
Audio: Polish
Subtitles: English

Dive into the captivating world of “Nightmares” (original title: “Zmory”), a 1979 Polish cinematic gem that unveils a poignant narrative set against the backdrop of pre-World War I Poland, during the Austrian occupation. In this article, we’ll take you on a comprehensive journey through the intriguing storyline, characters, and the film’s enduring charm. Join us as we explore a historic era where church and state conspire to suppress the human spirit, as we navigate through the intricacies of this remarkable cinematic creation.

Some “Nightmares (1979)” Scenes:

The Enchanting Storyline


“Nightmares” transcends time and place, painting a vivid picture of a young boy’s coming of age in a turbulent era. Our protagonist, Nikolai, hails from an affluent and scholarly family, but his world takes a drastic turn when his parents fall gravely ill. After the untimely death of his father, he finds himself dispatched to a rigorous boarding school nestled in the Galician part of Poland, under the oppressive rule of austere priests. Here, Nikolai’s spirited and independent nature clashes with the authoritarian school authorities, particularly after he publicly declares his disbelief in the existence of the devil.


Nikolai’s life takes yet another poignant twist as he resides with his aunt and alcoholic uncle, who constantly remind him of the financial burden he represents. A shocking revelation unfolds as he overhears a conversation about a substantial sum of money his father had entrusted to his relatives for his care. It becomes evident that his uncle has squandered most of the funds on debauchery and excess. As Nikolai matures, he becomes increasingly attuned to the prevailing political climate, nurturing socialist sentiments that will shape his future.


The Intriguing Journey


“Nightmares” is a cinematic masterpiece that beautifully captures the essence of its historical era. This captivating coming-of-age film stands out for its exceptional cinematography, evocative music score, and brilliant acting. Yet, it does not escape minor criticisms. Some viewers may desire a deeper exploration of the relationship between Nikolai and his aunt and uncle, which remains somewhat underdeveloped. Additionally, a scene depicting schoolboys crafting fighter jets out of paper may raise questions about its historical accuracy. Did children engage in such activities during the early 20th century? Nevertheless, these are minor critiques that hardly detract from the film’s overall enjoyment, securing it a respectable 7/10 rating.


Exploring the Film’s Themes


“Nightmares” resonates with viewers through its portrayal of the indomitable human spirit in the face of adversity. It delves deep into the societal and political undercurrents of its time, painting a vivid picture of a Poland struggling under Austrian rule and the stifling partnership between church and state. Nikolai’s journey symbolizes the resilience of the individual in a repressive environment, a theme that remains relevant across eras and cultures.


How to Watch ‘Nightmares’ Online For FREE


For those eager to embark on this captivating cinematic journey, “Nightmares” (original title: “Zmory”) is available for streaming on By clicking on one of the blue buttons on this page, you can experience this enchanting tale of love, rebellion, and resilience firsthand.


We invite you to explore the depths of “Nightmares” and get lost in the historical landscapes of pre-World War I Poland. As you immerse yourself in this tale of a young boy’s transformation into a politically awakened young man, you’ll find yourself captivated by the riveting storytelling and the enduring relevance of its themes. Don’t miss this opportunity to experience a cinematic masterpiece that transcends time and place.

Nightmares Scenes

Nightmares (1979)
Nightmares (1979)
Nightmares (1979)
Nightmares (1979)

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