Posted on Facebook by WT Solley (4.25.21, 10:37 am):
It’s been 13 months since I first saw Roman Polanski’s drop-dead masterpiece, and almost 20 months since it opened at the 2019 Venice Film Festival. To the best of my knowledge English subtitles were never available on the Gaumont Bluray, and English-speaking audiences still aren’t allowed to stream it with same because distributors are still fearful of potential #MeToo pushback. (And yet a December 2019 trailer has English subs!)
The path out of this situation is not difficult: The unfortunate history of a flawed artist is one thing, but the art itself is another. Suppressing public access to high-quality art is, to put it mildly, odious — a truly bad look.
From my 3.25.20 review: “J’Accuse has been crafted with absolute surgical genius…a lucid and exacting and spot-on retelling of an infamous episode…a sublime atmospheric and textural recapturing of 1890s ‘belle epoque’ Paris, and such a meticulous, hugely engrossing reconstruction of the Dreyfus affair…a tale told lucidly…a clue-by-clue, layer-by-layer thing.
“You know what J’Accuse is? A bedtime comfort flick — comforting because it’s so damned good.
“It’s my idea of a perfect film in every respect — Polanski and Robert Harris‘s brilliant screenplay, the ace-level production design by Jean Rabasse and art direction by Dominique Moisan, Pawel Edelman‘s naturally lighted cinematography, Alexandre Desplat‘s music…every single element is aces.
“Jean Dujardin’s lead performance as Georges Picqart, the intelligence officer who uncovered the frame-up, is easily his career-best. Ditto Louis Garrel as Dreyfus plus Emmanuelle Seigner, Mathieu Amalric, Melvil Poupaud, Eric Ruf, Laurent Stocker, etc. And with everyone under the constraints of the era, of having to hold themselves erect and behave in a stiffly correct manner.
“J’Accuse is a textural, cerebral masterpiece, and yet one of the most affecting anti-racism films ever made. The sight of the Parisian nationalists and anti-Semites cheering on the lying military brass…the MAGA redhats of their day.”
Here’s a follow-up piece about access to English subtitles being way out of reach.