Maybe you need to watch this extraordinary film twice to understand completely the vision of Ukrainian director Andrzej Zulawski.
It is a film that Polish government banned and Zulawski never recreated it back at its original form.
It is based on the adaptation of "The Lunar Trilogy" written by the directors Uncle Jerry Żuławski between 1901 and 1911 (never published in English but popular in Europe).
In the beginning we find two astronauts being in a ruined palace where primitive humanoids surround them with curiosity.
One of them has found a strange old device which shows the voyage of an earlier space flight to the planet crushing over the mountains.
Half of the crew survived and the rest die one by one.
The astronaut woman is already pregnant and she will bring her first child on a new world.
More children come in life but because the astronauts are getting older at a much slower rate, they become Godlike elders of the newly emerging (from incest) humans.
The second generation grows a new civilization based on Shamanism. The last astronaut named Old man is going to travel back to his comrades death spots and find the meaning of life.
When he will be back things will have been changed.
So the device keeps narrating the story of the past natives to the two astronauts.
Then we watch the second story.
When a new spacecraft is landing on the planet a cosmic traveller from the future is being selected as the messiah by the natives who we come to realize are the descendants of the first mission.
The new Messiah indulges in his Godking status, and deals with the threat posed by winged telepathic creatures called Sherns who kidnap and mate with native women to produce...lizard men?
What follows is espionage, decadence, war, and delirious parade of fantastic and occasionally grotesque images.
This film is a brilliant visual poetry and an interesting anthropological concept with impressive sets and great make-up.
If you ever liked Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, this is the next stuff for your mind and your eyes!