The Pianist

The Pianist (2002)

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Wladyslaw Szpilman (Adrien Brody) survives the war thanks to a German officer who spared his life, gave him food and let him stay hidden in the attic of that house. The German officer (and the rest of his men) are sent to a Russian prison camp. Szpilman goes back to playing piano and unfortunately, never learns the name of the officer who saved his life. The name of the officer is Wilm Hosenfeld. Wilm Hosenfeld died in a Soviet prison in 1952. He was posthumously awarded the Yad Veshem's title of "Righteous Among Nations" in October 2007. Szpilman was not the only Jew he saved during WWII.


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An old man appears with children following him. This is supposed to be pedagogue Janusz Korczak. It appeared as if he was just wearing a suit and a Jewish arm band. In the Warsaw Ghetto, Mr. Korczak never wore an arm band and wore his WWI Polish Army Uniform, both as acts of defiance. He was beaten and almost put to death (he had connections) for not wearing an arm band so having one on in the movie is inaccurate.



Adrian Brody insisted on learning to play the piano himself because he detested the idea of him being in a long shot pretending to play the instrument and then the camera showing someone else's hands on a close up shot actually playing. He said he hated that, not just for him, but on any other film that had such a scene. So he went and took lessons, practicing for hours on end.