The Pianist and Some Thoughts on Genocide

A friend and I watch a lot of movies. In fact, we watch so many that we scoured the internet looking for a list of “the best movies of all time.” We were met with a list of the top 250 movies of all time from IMDB. On that list was a little film entitled “The Pianist.”I remembered seeing the trailer for The Pianist at the beginning of The Emperor’s Club and thinking to myself “that looks like a decent film.” I was correct.

The Pianist is about a well-known Jewish pianist who is relatively famous – until the Nazi’s force him and his family, first, into a ghetto, then, into hiding. The whole time I was watching the film and it’s very graphic portrayal of The Nazi treatment of Jews, I found myself more and more angry with the people who simply sat back and watched all this happen. My friend was more moved to dislike the Nazi’s (a very valid response), but I found myself being more and more compelled to question those who sat idly by and watched it all happen. There were even people who were disgusted with the way the Nazi’s treated the Jews, yet they did nothing.

They remained silent, kept to themselves, didn’t ask questions, didn’t fight back, didn’t resist, didn’t help. Did nothing.

How often, in our world, do we sit back and watch horrible acts take place. We don’t even raise a finger.

Google”Genocide” and you find listings of – at least – three different countries were atrocities like this are or have recently taken place:

As I grow and become more and more aware of things like this, I want to be someone who stands up for the weak, poor, oppressed, etc.

at the end of this movie, i was reminded of a quote by a lutheran pastor.

  • They came first for the Communists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist.
  • Then they came for the Jews, and i didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew.
  • Then then came for the trade unionists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist.
  • Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn’t speak up because I was a Protestant.
  • Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one left to speak up.

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clips from “The Pianist”

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