Talk about your favorite film – The pianist
You should say:
- what it is
- when you watched it
- what it is about
- and explain why this is your favourite movie.
I’m a huge movie enthusiast, so I love experiencing various types of movies since I was a kid. There are some movies, you know, just casual, cliché, and there are phenomenal movies that imprint in your mind once you watched them. To me, “The pianist” is that kind of movie!
The movie was based on the true-life memoir of Wladyslaw Szpilman – a talented Polish pianist who survived the Holocaust. It was directed by Roman Polanski in 2002 and is regarded as one of the most stunning, heartfelt, and moving art pieces of this director. This substantial work got glowing reviews from the critics and achieved the Cannes Palme d’Or in the same year. The success of this movie was the combination of a sensational plot, excellent production design, and painterly effects. The convincing performance of Adrien Brody as Szpilman was also lauded and won the Academy Award in 2002.
The movie started with the blowing-up scene in the studio of Warsaw radio when the Nazis invaded the city. After that event, Szpilman and his family are moved into a dreadful, crowded ghetto where they have to suffer from racism, starvation, and plagues. It is even more horrifying after Szpilman becomes the last survivor of the ghetto. The scene of a Nazi officer tipping a wheelchair old man out of the balcony to me is the most harrowing one.
The reason why I love this movie that much is how they resolute the consecutive devastation by bringing the climactic meeting between the pianist and a German officer. Spilzman’s desire to play the piano was fervent! When he had a chance to play Chopin’s Ballade no 1 for the officer, he just couldn’t resist. Szpilman’s precious talent touched the officer’s heart, and he helps Spzilman to hide and survive the winter. This is indeed the beauty of art that can surpass any barrier. Even though this suggestion of the humanity of a good German is somehow difficult to accept by some audience since we are just reminded of the notoriety of Nazis from the previous scenes, it is still plausible and touching to me.
Speaking Part 3: Follow Question
- Do you think the cinema has increased or decreased in popularity in recent years?
With the development of technology such as movie apps Netflix, Hulu, HBO max, and Disney +, more and more people are now able to access a wider range of movies. The plus point is they can enjoy their favorite movies at home while using the apps. So, I think that in the next couple of years, there will be fewer people visiting a theatre to enjoy a movie. This might not be true for some actions or 3D, or 4D movies since most people cannot afford to equip their homes to experience these specific types.
- What are the advantages and disadvantages of making films of real-life events?
In my opinion, movies based on real-life stories usually have several major advantages, such as gripping events, attention from the audience and even a huge fan base. On the other hand, filmmakers also encounter some difficulties in making this type of movie. For example, casting actors and actresses will be a tough challenge since the character is already widely known. If their appearance and performance do not match the original character, the audience may lose interest in the movie. Also, to make the real-life events closer to the audience, you know, like more entertaining or more youthful to approach a younger audience, the screenwriter has to adjust the storyline. The movie might turn into a disaster and get panned by critics if the screenwriter over-modifies the story.
- How important do you think it is for a filmmaker to remain true to the original story?
It depends on the original story, honestly. If the storyline is part of a historical event or to describe a famous people, which requires preciseness, then the filmmakers should remain true to the story. Unless they got permission to alter the adaptation from the original character, they should respect its truthfulness. For instance, the movie Em and Trinh got severely slated by the audience when they twisted the figure of the famous music composer. However, filmmakers may consider altering fictional book adaptations to make them more approachable and entertaining.