Movie: "The Pianist."

Essay by aznXsa2587 October 2005

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"The Pianist is a testimony to the power of music, the will to live, and the courage to stand against evil."--Roman Polanski. Roman Polanski, the director of "The Pianist", was a survivor of the bombing of Warsaw and the Cracow Ghetto. His family was killed during the Holocaust, but he survived by escaping through a hole in the barbed wire at the age of seven. "The Pianist" is a story about life in Warsaw, Poland during World War II. Based on an autobiography written by Wladyslaw Szpilman right after the war and Polanski's own personal recollections, "The Pianist" is about the life of Wladyslaw Szpilman (played by Adrien Brody), a Polish Jew who survived the Holocaust by hiding from Germans and scavenging for food.

The film opens just before the war begins, portraying the quality of life in Poland before the German invasion. The lifestyle was rich and prosperous with minimal worries while Szpilman worked as a pianist on the Polish radio.

Szpilman and his family, along with all of the other Jews in Warsaw, were gradually forced out of their homes and into Jewish ghettos where the Germans progressively destroyed the living conditions of the Polish Jews with each move. As time passes in the film, more and more corpses are shown lying on the street in a harsh portrayal of the living conditions in the ghettos. Szpilman's family was eventually boarded onto a cattle train along with all of the other Jews and sent to a gas chamber. A friend of Szpilman's who was working for the Jewish police, helping the Germans to torture their fellow Jews, grabbed Szpilman from boarding the train and warned him to run away, saving him from certain death. From then on Szpilman was on his own, searching for food and a place...