Roman Polanski he is one of the last great masters of cinema, it goes without saying. A sixty-year career, dozens of hits, several masterpieces, and a life of pain (from fleeing Nazism to the murder of his wife Sharon Tate in the Cielo Drive massacre) and controversy. Polanski’s great talent is a natural strength combined with an eclectic nature and the ability to observe reality from a point of view different from his own, as objective as possible. His filmography is full of layered and complex works that can shock the viewer regardless of the genre, from horror to drama with a theatrical setting. Lighthouse of Modernity, which is 90 years old today, the perfect anniversary to check out his 7 best films.
Roman Polanski’s second film and his first English-language feature.Disgustperhaps his scariest film. Conceived as a purely commercial film, Repulsion is a drama reminiscent of Hitchcock both in its title and in the choice of its main character, a blonde woman in danger. Excellent stress and anxiety management, a work full of metaphorical scenes and complex shots. It is impossible not to mention the hypnotic beauty of Catherine Deneuve in one of her first appearances on the big screen.
Rosemary’s Baby (1968)
Based on the novel of the same name. “Rosemary’s Baby” it is one of several masterpieces signed by Polanski. The director faithfully follows the novel by Ira Levina, combining realism and psychological distortion. Between torment and anxiety, between Satanism and violence, it was a box office success, thanks in part to outstanding performances, most notably Mia Farrow and Ruth Gordon.
The first noir in the director’s filmography”,Chinatownis the biggest commercial and critical success of Polanski’s career and also his last film to be shot in the United States. A superb piece of cinematic writing is the zenith of Robert Towne – but it would be unfair not to mention the excellent direction as well: Chinatown is visually extraordinary. Numerous tributes to the classics of the genre, without abandoning the modernization. And what a wonderful ending!
Third Floor Tenant (1976)
Like many other films, “Third Floor Tenant” it’s part of that list of works re-evaluated over the years. The failure at the box office – fortunately, this did not affect Polanski’s career – the shocking psychological thriller is very reminiscent of the aforementioned “Revulsion”. Here the director also plays a leading role, playing with reality and imagination.
Based on the autobiographical novel of the same name by Vladislav Shpilman. “Pianist” this is an excellent movie. A heartbreaking and intense story that tells of an era in which an imperfect and fortunate person plays the main role, because he survived a huge tragedy, such as the Holocaust. Winner of the Palme d’Or at Cannes and three Academy Awards, the film is fast-paced and full of fast, action-packed scenes. For Adrien Brody, the interpretation of life.
Based on the play by the French playwright and writer Yasmina Reza “The God of Slaughter”.massacre“This is theater that becomes cinema. Extraordinary narrative tension, chamber drama that turns into a game of four, raspberries into political correctness. the four protagonists are sumptuous: Jodie Foster, Kate Winslet, Christoph Waltz and John S. Reilly.
Officer and Spy (2019)
While waiting for The Palace – it will be presented out of competition at the Venice Film Festival – Polanski’s latest film is among the gems of his filmography: “Officer and Spy”. The director brings to the big screen the case of Alfred Dreyfus, a French army officer who in 1894 was accused of espionage and put on trial. Mistake of justice, failure of justice and anti-Semitism: many questions on the table, not forgetting intolerance and shameful pillory in the media. Once again, Polanski, through the Dreyfus affair, draws attention to the relationship between society and ethics, a constant in Polanski’s cinema.