The Mother of Kings (Polish: Matka Królów) is a Polish drama film, made in 1982 but not released until 1987, directed by Janusz Zaorski. It was entered into the 38th Berlin International Film Festival, where it won the Silver Bear for an outstanding single achievement.
Janusz Zaorski’s Matka Królów charts the life of Lucja Król (Magda Teresa Wójcik, tremendous), a Polish washerwoman, the widowed mother of four sons, from the mid-1930s through 1956, when destalinization permitted a rehabilitated Wladyslaw Gomulka to be elected president of the Polish Communist Party. Unlike Gomulka’s, the political imprisonment of one of Lucja’s sons, Klemens (Boguslaw Linda, superb), resolves itself in his death. Uninformed of this, Lucja awaits Klemens’s release and return. “You’ve had a hard life,” an old friend notes. Lucja: “Others have had a harder one."