THE PIANIST (15)
D: Roman Polanski
Pathé/Heritage/Babelsberg (Roman Polanski, Robert Benmussa & Alain Sarde)
W: Ronald Harwood [based on the book by Wladyslaw Szpilman]
DP: Pawel Edelman
Ed: Hervé de Luze
Mus: Wojciech Kilar
PD: Allan Starski
Cos: Anna B. Sheppard
Adrien Brody (Wladyslaw Szpilman), Thomas Kretschmann (Capt. Wilhelm Hosenfeld), Frank Finlay (Mr. Szpilman), Maureen Lipman (Mrs. Szpilman), Emilia Fox (Dorota), Ed Stoppard (Henryk), Julia Rayner (Regina), Jessica Kate Meyer (Halina), Ruth Platt (Janina)
A bleak and emotionally distressing experience, but a marvellously crafted biopic of Wladyslaw Szpilman, a Jewish pianist who is separated from his family during the Nazi invasion of Poland and escapes capture by hiding alone in derelict and abandoned buildings.
The vivid depiction of persecution is realistically captured by Roman Polanski, who doesn't shy away from the horrors of war for even a second of the running time. Adrien Brody delivers a strong performance with a very passive character and all the elements of the production are realistically envisioned. Few will wish to watch it again, but it's a film which needs to be seen and respected.