A documentary about Roman Polanski, the man and filmmaker. Roman Polanski speaks about his eventful life story and career in conversation with Andrew Braunsberg, his former business partner, producer, and friend of many years.
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In 1977, Roman Polanski was arrested in Los Angeles on charges he gave drugs and had sex with a 13-year-old girl he was photographing for Vogue. Eleven months later, having pled guilty to one count, he fled to Europe before sentencing. This film examines that year-long period, using archival footage of the media frenzy and of Polanski's life before the charges, clips from his films, and contemporary interviews with many of the principles - attorneys, the victim, and Polanski's friends and associates. Polanski remains enigmatic, but portraits emerge of the machinations of justice and of a judge more interested in his image than his word or the law. Written by
The title of the show means: while he's currently "wanted" in America (for arrest) and he's also "desired" (revered) in France, where he lives. That's quite a disparity.
If you aren't familiar with the sex scandal involving (then) 44 year old Polanski and a 13 year old Los Angeles girl, this documentary tells the story. The film catches up with the attorneys and associated individuals to tell the story. Because there is so much archival footage and current commentary by principals involved, including the girl, this film is probably the best source of information for the event.
Missing, of course, is current-day commentary of Polanski. However, there is a fair bit of archival footage presented in which he discusses the event.
I didn't know much about Polanski, but was intrigued to learn about his background. Apparently he and his parents were sent to a concentration camp where his mother died. During his rise to fame, he married Sharon Tate, who was tortured and murdered by the Manson family (she was pregnant with his son at the time). And there is more - including some details of the event and the strange judge involved.
One gripe about the show is the use of small text: if you're watching it on a small TV, you'll have to squint to try and read some of the text presented throughout the program. It is quite irritating.
However, all in all, the show was pretty fascinating. It's kind of reminiscent of the OJ Simpson event in some says. In this case though, Polanski seems to have been able to carry on with his career.
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