This Netflix Film Eerily Predicted a Real-Life Political Assassination

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“Truth is the most important thing,” says Tomasz (Maciej Musiałowski) midway through The Hater, and of all the falsehoods this habitual liar spews, none is more shameless. Still, while deception is Tomasz’s stock-in-trade, there’s plenty of authenticity to be found in writer/director Jan Komasa’s Netflix feature (premiering July 29), whose release was temporarily delayed because its fictional story wound up echoing a real-life tragedy that shook Komasa’s native Poland.

Three weeks after filming wrapped on The Hater, liberal Gdańsk mayor Paweł Adamowicz was assassinated on stage at a Christmas charity event by a right-wing hatemonger—a shocking crime that eerily echoes the plot of Komasa’s latest, which builds to a similar massacre involving a left-leaning homosexual politician who, by total coincidence, is also named Paweł. That campaigning candidate is not, however, the material’s protagonist; instead, the focus is squarely on Tomasz, a twentysomething student introduced being kicked out

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