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85

Universal acclaim - based on 40 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 262 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: Wladyslaw Szpilman, a brilliant Polish pianist, a Jew, escapes deportation. Forced to live in the heart of the Warsaw ghetto, he shares the suffering, the humiliation and the struggles. He manages to escape and hides in the ruins of the capital. A German officer comes to his aid and helpsWladyslaw Szpilman, a brilliant Polish pianist, a Jew, escapes deportation. Forced to live in the heart of the Warsaw ghetto, he shares the suffering, the humiliation and the struggles. He manages to escape and hides in the ruins of the capital. A German officer comes to his aid and helps him to survive. (Focus Features) Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 40
  2. Negative: 0 out of 40
  1. A great movie on a powerful, essential subject -- the Holocaust years in Poland -- directed with such artistry and skill that, as we watch, the barriers of the screen seem to melt away.
  2. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    100
    The best film of 2002.
  3. Polanski’s strongest and most personally felt movie.
  4. After an hour, The Pianist stops being the Holocaust movie and becomes a Holocaust movie.
  5. The power of the arts to transcend cultural differences is presumably what moves the German to spare Szpilman, and, perhaps, is the key to Polanski's salvation as well.
  6. To name only one of its predecessors -- for me, the towering one -- doesn't "Schindler's List" do everything that Polanski achieves and more?
  7. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    50
    Surprisingly lacks a feeling of personal urgency and insight that would have made it a distinctive, even unique contribution to the considerable number of films that deal with the war in general and Holocaust in particular.

See all 40 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 84 out of 93
  2. Negative: 7 out of 93
  1. Aug 2, 2011
    10
    I especially appreciate this movie for portraying people as real as it gets. There are no only good or bad sides here. It shows us that theI especially appreciate this movie for portraying people as real as it gets. There are no only good or bad sides here. It shows us that the war never really changed poeple to mindless warmongering zombies. There were bad and good people everywhere. The story of a young Jewish radio pianist is interesting as the perspective is shown from his secret flat provided by the Polish. Everything he experienced most of the time was viewing from his apartment`s window. The apocalyptic reality of ghettos also have some time in this movie so we can see how he Germans treated their slaves. The character played by Adrien Brody is likeable and interesting to the point we want to stick with the story. And in this movie we see another page of history which is Germans destroying Warsaw. In the end I felt sorry for Wilm Hosenfeld and I reflected upon how unjust and random war is. Expand
  2. Jan 20, 2013
    10
    This movie tells a story that we cannot forget , it is very shocking how the human being tries to live also known as survival escaping fromThis movie tells a story that we cannot forget , it is very shocking how the human being tries to live also known as survival escaping from the nazis. Everyone should se this movie because it has a great and amazing story to tell. Expand
  3. Aug 23, 2014
    10
    This Palme D'or winner movie is one of the best movies i have ever seen. It connects emotionally with the audience, the music by FredericThis Palme D'or winner movie is one of the best movies i have ever seen. It connects emotionally with the audience, the music by Frederic Chopin is beautiful and the performances are very good. This movie is the reason why musicians struggle to live just to do what they love, art! Expand
  4. richardh
    Nov 15, 2008
    9
    Spectacular film. hard to call it polanski's best since Chinatown is may be one of the top 5 films of all time, but if you don't Spectacular film. hard to call it polanski's best since Chinatown is may be one of the top 5 films of all time, but if you don't feel incredibly moved by the film - check you pulse, because you might be dead. Expand
  5. May 11, 2014
    9
    This is arguably Roman Polanski's most powerful and breathtaking film. It's shot beautifully and written beautifully. Adrian Brody gives aThis is arguably Roman Polanski's most powerful and breathtaking film. It's shot beautifully and written beautifully. Adrian Brody gives a brilliant lead performance. This is undoubtedly one of the best Holocaust films ever made. Expand
  6. Oct 5, 2012
    9
    When this movie came out ten years ago, it received much critical acclaim. Somehow, I never got around to watching it. The other night IWhen this movie came out ten years ago, it received much critical acclaim. Somehow, I never got around to watching it. The other night I noticed it was available on Netflix streaming, so I decided to watch.

    This was an amazing movie. To me, it was more moving than Schindler's List. Adrien Brody's acting was top notch and the direction was great.
    Expand
  7. DaveC.
    Sep 24, 2005
    4
    Can't go wrong with Adrien Brody, whose performance is, at once, intense and sympathetic, yet the character he is playing is little more Can't go wrong with Adrien Brody, whose performance is, at once, intense and sympathetic, yet the character he is playing is little more than a void in the film, where we should in fact be thinking of him as the protagonist. Many sections of the film are risible where the ought to be taken seriously and at other times, I wasn't even convinced. The piano playing sequences are pretentious and obvious and the rest of the film feels like a missed opportunity. Why doesn't it tackle issues like the prejudices of slavic poles towards the jews. I never got the sense of what it might have felt like to be jew. Polanski has evidently been more pre-occupied with making a crowd-pleasing thrill ride. What a waste. Expand

See all 93 User Reviews

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