The Pianist (2002) Adrien Brody, Emilia Fox, Michal Zebrowski, Ed Stoppard, Maureen Lipman Movie Review

The Pianist (2002)   4/54/54/54/54/5

Adrien Brody in The Pianist (2002)

The Uncertainty of Life

As the bombing of Warsaw starts to destroy buildings and cause panic, musician Wladyslaw Szpilman (Adrien Brody) and his family are forced in to the ghetto with the rest of the Polish Jews. But whilst his family end up on a train out of the Ghetto Wladyslaw is pulled from the line and stays behind where he turns his hand to what ever job he can in order to survive. And survive is what he does as he ends up going in to hiding as the Ghetto becomes desolate before heading in to the city where he relies on the generosity of others to hide him from the Nazis.

Most movies I watch are easy to review; you give a short plot outline, say how your feel about what you watched and jobs a good un. But once in a while you come across a movie which no review can do justice to and you feel like saying just rent or buy the movie and experience it for yourself as it is only in the experience does the movie come to life. That is the case of "The Pianist" a movie which no matter how much you write about it it just won't come to life and needs to be experienced.

Maureen Lipman in The Pianist (2002)

So there have been quite a few holocaust movies over the years and on paper "The Pianist" sounds like just another with this story of pianist Wladyslaw Szpilman who survived the atrocities and went on to become a successful musician. And yes this is based on a real person so technically this is the biopic of Wladyslaw Szpilman. But then in a way it's not about Wladyslaw Szpilman but a movie about the holocaust from an insiders point of view.

What I mean is alongside all the expected aspects such as the starvation, the barbaric treatment and so on we see more day to day things such as doing labouring to eat, being forced to walk in the gutter and so much more. As I said it makes it less about what Wladyslaw Szpilman went through but more an insight in to the ever day life where you don't know whether you will still be alive come nightfall as you are just as likely to be pulled out of a line up and executed for no other reason than being a Jew.

As such "The Pianist" doesn't hold back and there are scene after scene which will leave you shocked and sickened. But whilst it is easy to write those words the experience of witnessing the treatment is where the movies power is. In fact visually from start to finish "The Pianist" is a visually powerful experience and is an impressive production. The irony of this is that whilst "The Pianist" features a great performance from Adrien Brody the rest of them are just as great and it is the completeness of the acting combined with the writing as well as the cinematography which makes "The Pianist" unforgettable.

What this all boils down to is that "The Pianist" is another holocaust movie but one which breaks the barriers of being a biopic and becomes one which is an experience of the uncertainty of life in the ghetto.