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Is Netflix’s “High Water” Series Based on a True Story?

Is Netflix’s High Water Based on a True Story

Is Netflix’s “High Water” Based on a True Story? – The Netflix drama series “High Water” (originally named “Wielka woda”) is set in 1997 in Poland and is directed by Jan Holoubek and Bartlomiej Ignaciuk. Jamina Tremer, a hydrologist, travels to Wrocaw, a city on the Oder River, to investigate the worrisome rise in water levels that suggests a possible flood. She assesses the situation with the help of the local administration and warns everyone that the impending harm might be more dangerous than anticipated.

Jamina’s warnings are not taken seriously by the locals, which causes significant damage when the flood occurs. The administration is soon pressured to decide crucial matters that will affect the lives of hundreds of individuals. The show leaves the audience guessing as to what will happen next thanks to its engaging plot and riveting performances by actors including Agnieszka Ulewska, Tomasz Schuchardt, Ireneusz Czop, and Damian Krajczyk. Furthermore, one is forced to wonder if “High Water” accurately portrays true events because of the realistic 1990s backdrop and the depiction of natural disasters.

There will be six episodes in all, each lasting between 40 and 60 minutes. The show centers on destructive floods, public servants, and a failing rescue effort. If you’re in the same situation, then let us put an end to your curiosity!

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Is High Water a True Story

Is “High Water” Series a True Story?

YES, “High Water” is, in fact, based on a true story. It tells the story of the devastating 1997 Central European flood, also known as the 1997 Oder Flood, which occurred in July 1997 and impacted Poland, Germany, and the Czech Republic. The Oder and Mava river basins endured significant flooding and devastation that month after two periods of heavy rainfall in Southwestern Poland and the Northeastern Czech Republic, with different effects in Germany.

The Genoa Low, a cyclone that developed from an earlier cyclone south of the Alps and covered the Gulf of Genoa, Ligurian Sea, Po Valley, and northern Adriatic, produced pressure that led to the heavy rainfall. The cyclone in question had moved from north Italy and lingered over southern Poland for quite some time, causing several months’ worth of rainfall to fall in just a few days. On July 5, 1997, flooding started in the Czech Republic and quickly moved into Poland the next day due to flash floods.

Gradually, the rising water levels affected other communities, including Prudnik and Guchoazy, Chaupki to Racibórz, and Krapkowice. Additionally, the water in Kodzko seriously damaged several historic buildings. In the second stage, the Oder River was traversed by the floodwaters, and several nearby villages were drowned. The waves finally reached Wroclaw, the focal point of the Netflix series, on July 12, 1997.

Before progressively slowing down as it approached the Polish-German border, the flood also impacted several other cities, including Opole, Rybnik, and Gogów. The slower water speed allowed time to take preventative action to limit future harm. Unfortunately, the floods significantly damaged Poland and the Czech Republic, with 3.8 billion euros in losses.

On the other hand, Germany suffered relatively smaller losses, totaling 330 million euros. Unfortunately, 144 people died due to the tragic incident throughout the three nations, with 56 of the fatalities occurring in Wroclaw itself. Regarding other losses in Poland, 680,000 homes were demolished or damaged, and about 7,000 families lost everything they owned. Not only that, but many private companies, colleges, and public transportation suffered.

1997 Central European flood, AKA the 1997 Oder Flood
1997 Central European flood, AKA the 1997 Oder Flood

The president proclaimed July 18, 1997, a National Day of Mourning, and the flood was given the label Millenial Flood due to the severity of its repercussions in Poland. Going back to “High Water,” the program carefully describes the circumstances leading up to the natural disaster in Wroclaw and how the residents dealt with the hardship. Despite being a fictional figure, Jamina Tremer represents all the scientists and government officials who made great efforts to lessen the consequences of the Millennium Flood on the city.

Producer Anna Kepinska of the program went into further detail about the subjects covered in the program in an interview from October 2022. She told, “We wanted to return to that mood and emotions, but in essence to create a universal story about making difficult decisions, a conflict between generations, individuals with the majority, countryside, and city. About the fact that you have to face your unfinished business, you cannot get away from it.

But also about an extraordinary common movement, willingness to help, solidarity, and the need to act. It was special. Overnight, ordinary everyday life was replaced by the struggle with the element, and trusted leaders emerged from the crowd. The flood is for us only the background of this story and the catalyst of events,” Kepinska continued.

The Netflix film focuses on nature’s wrath and conveys a devastating message during this period of environmental disaster rather than simply acting out the incident and its casualties in a dramatic fashion. Thus, the show is mostly an accurate depiction of the 1997 flood and its aftermath, despite adding fictional objects and people to the story.

On October 5, 2022, the show “High Water” will debut on Netflix.

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