Results tagged “Bernard-Henri Lévy” from ARTicles

They were out in force at Cannes, in black T-shirts bearing the name of the martyred artist--not that Iranian director imprisoned by his government to prevent him from attending the festival, but Roman Polanski. Here in France quite a few filmmakers as well as some prominent politicians and intellectuals have joined the crusade to free him.

Reflecting the mood on the Croisette, Woody Allen told an interviewer that Polanski had paid a fair price for his "mistake." That would be 42 days in a hospital prison before he decided to flee the country--a fair price for drugging and seducing a 13-year-old girl, according to Allen, who added that Polanski had suffered enough over the years. Allen's empathy may stem from his own run-in with the courts. In 1993 he lost the right to unsupervised visits with his children when a judge ruled that his 7-year-old daughter needed protection from him, and after he ran off with her 22-year-old sister.

Despite the ample publicity it has received, the Polanski Liberation Front is hardly a mass movement in France. But it isn't hard to find men--especially men of a certain age--who regard his arrest in Switzerland and possible deportation to the United States as a grave injustice. And since Polanski is a French citizen, even the government got involved at first. The president talked to his Swiss counterpart, and the foreign minister voiced the hope that the whole affair would "come to a favorable resolution." The minister of culture, an important figure here, proclaimed himself "astonished" by Polanski's detention, but he grew silent after it was revealed that he had written a memoir in which he confessed--ruefully, it must be said--to engaging in sex tourism in Thailand. Since then the state has been, at least publicly, hors de combat.

May 25, 2010 7:22 AM |


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