Friday, July 4, 2008

The Pianist

Bob of "moviesbybob" fame (that's a youtube screen name) suggested that I watch The Pianist, a 2002 film by Roman Polanski about a classical pianist who survived the holocaust in Warsaw. This film won the Palme d'Or at Cannes in 2002 and is based on the life of Wladyslaw Szpilman who before the war worked as a piano player for Warsaw radio. Watching the film culminated a bizarre flow of information that came to me as I tried to wind down from two weeks of intense consuming heady work and included exposure to new information about the rapid replenishment of depleted oil fields through geomechanics, the predictions of World War I, World War II and the invasion of Iraq by Albert Pike an American Grand Mason of the Scottish Rite, and plopping in a copy of Southland Tales without any idea what it is about on the very day that this futuristic movie released in 2005 was primarily set: July 3, 2008. And more ironically as I broke a way from an online debate concerning unconstitutional surveillance to watch Southland Tales. The milieu of Southland Tales is an Apocalyptic surveillance state America. Moby does a nice job with the soundtrack for this satire.

The journey also encompassed exposure to youtube.com expose's on Silvia Divinorum and Don Juan. The trip has been a veritable journey in syncromysticism. Don't get me wrong. I am not advocating psychotropics here but if we can see how people access new points of view by whatever methods then the trip toward some perceptive flexibility is enhanced in understanding.

The thing about The Pianist, though, that was so striking in its classical and elegant realism was, by way of contrast, the brutality of the Nazis. That the Nazis were a brutal group is no news, but I do not believe I have ever encountered anything that brought this point home in the way The Pianist does. Perhaps it is in the contrast of the fundamental decency of the lives of Szpilman and his family with the craven brutality of Nazism. There is nothing sensational or exploitive about the film. It is shot from the point of view of a sober, unflinching eye. And this mundane humane steadiness perhaps shocks the system that has been so conditioned by exaggerated gratuitous violence in our media. The lingering question then in these expeditions is then "what we may be?" not so much in our context but in our perceptions.

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