Sunday, February 7, 2010

The Pianist

I 'd like to say I enjoyed the rare occasion of spending an evening home alone w/ my husband last night ....but I really had no idea what I was getting us into when I picked out this movie for us to watch. If I had known....I would not have watched it. I've long managed to avoid Schindler's List for similar reasons. But, in all honesty, I'm so glad I did watch it. Just considering how painful it was to watch, & the freedom I took at times to close my eyes &/or plug my ears - somehow helped me realize, even more than I did before I watched it, just how horrific the holocaust was. I was almost in shock. Wasn't until after we went to bed that tears finally stung. One thing that helped me get thru' it was knowing that this man survived ... & that this was his story - from which we can learn so much.

Winner of the prestigious Golden Palm award at the 2002 Cannes film festival, The Pianist is the film that Roman Polanski was born to direct. A childhood survivor of Nazi-occupied Poland, Polanski was uniquely suited to tell the story of Wladyslaw Szpilman, a Polish Jew and concert pianist (played by Adrien Brody) who witnessed the Nazi invasion of Warsaw, miraculously eluded the Nazi death camps, and survived throughout World War II by hiding among the ruins of the Warsaw ghetto. Unlike any previous dramatization of the Nazi holocaust, The Pianist steadfastly maintains its protagonist's singular point of view, allowing Polanski to create an intimate odyssey on an epic wartime scale, drawing a direct parallel between Szpilman's tenacious, primitive existence and the wholesale destruction of the city he refuses to abandon. Uncompromising in its physical and emotional authenticity, The Pianist strikes an ultimate note of hope and soulful purity. As with Schindler's List, it's one of the greatest films ever made about humanity's darkest chapter. --Jeff Shannon


jabblog said...

This film had a profound effect on me when I saw it a few years ago. Difficult viewing but necessary and ultimately optimistic too.

MyStory of HiStory said...

Hello Jabblog. "Difficult viewing but necessary and ultimately optimistic too."...You said it so well...& so concisely.

It had a profound effect on me too.

Scattering Lupines said...

oh, I avoid such movies, too.

One I did NOT manage to avoid that had a tremedous effect on me was Valkyrie.

And the book Night still haunts me...

One word:

HOW can humans do such things to other humans?
HOW does such a man come to lead so many people to such terror?

The only thing I can answer with is: Fear.

MyStory of HiStory said...

Hi Lupine. Your comment struck me...very interesting - especially when I considered something Beth Moore shared in her study of Esther (another "chapter" of human history where the Jewish people were facing the threat of their extermination) ....the most frequently repeated command in the Bible is Fear not/Do not fear...

And as far as this movie is concerned - I was struck by how it revealed/portrayed that not all German soldiers were "bad people" - & not all Jewish people were "good people" & that it was based on a true story (the main character's journal & I believe the journal of a German soldier too & was directed by a holocaust survivor ... all of this & more just re-affirmed the films authenticity in my mind. In a strange way, I think we owe it to those who endured it & to our children ... to watch it.

Tammy@If Meadows Speak... said...

I haven't seen this movie. Now I'm wondering about it. If it's too sad, I don't know if I could watch it. The Holocaust is so horrific I can't wrap my brain it. I always imagine myself there, my kids being ripped from me and my thoughts begin to run away. So glad to you know your "survived" it.

Nishant said...

Difficult viewing but necessary and ultimately optimistic too.

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