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Can You Separate A Film Maker From Their Body of Work?

I considered writing this little piece in a vacuum, leaving the issue the sparked it sitting like an elephant in the room – but there’s really no point avoiding it. I’ve been troubled watching Roman Polanski films ever since I read up and discovered why he had to direct The Ninth Gate from abroad. The knowledge that he had engaged in sexual acts with a thirteen year old girl has been very hard to disassociate from the man in viewing his filmography – oddly enough, it’s harder to disassociate than the grisly facts surrounding the brutal murder of Sharon Tate by the Manson family. I saw The Pianist and his rather lacklustre (Playboy financed) version of Macbeth before I found out about his flight to Europe and his seemingly eternal exile. I was unlucky enough to see Chinatown afterwards, and as great as the film was I couldn’t quite get over what Polanski had done. Am I being a little silly or is it really hard to view the work of film makers in a vacuum?

"Forget it, Jake, it's Polaski..."

"Forget it, Jake, it's Polaski..."

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