Movie Review Haiku:
One of the best books.
Can film meet expectations?
… above and beyond!
Movie Review Detail:
As I mentioned briefly in a previous post, The Book Thief is one of my new favorite books. During the 2012 “year to get back into reading”, it easily became one of my favorite reads for the year. The book is so deeply emotional and gripping, that you truly feel a part of the story and history at play. Almost as if you too play the role of Death, waiting on the imminent passing of these in-depth characters. The book was powerful, epic, and life-changing … so obviously expectations for the film adaptation had to be placed low.
That was a huge mistake. This film kept me at the edge of my seat, and even though I knew what to expect it still kept hold of me throughout. I was as passionately moved by the film now as I was by the book a year ago, and truly appreciate all the work that went into this story by Markus Zusak. Powerful dramas like this truly tug at my heartstrings, desperately pulling at my eyelids in a 2 hour battle to fight back tears. At 32, it takes a lot from a movie to bring me to tears, and although I managed to stay dry … let’s just say my sister Devorah would laugh at how close this got to our 1994 screening of Legends of the Fall.
What amazed me the most about this film adaptation, is how PERFECTLY cast it was, especially knowing they were mostly nobodies. I can not get over how much every character matched my internal image: Liesel, Rudy, Hans, Rosa, Frau Heinrich … each perfectly resembling the vision for each character in my head. Liesel and Rudy especially, who have done nothing but one-off German films to date … absolutely stole every scene. And the one star, Geoffrey Rush … another impressive role to put on his shelf next to Captain Barbossa and Lionel Logue.
I know the critics don’t match my sentiments, but I urge to you see and decide for yourself. If every actor isn’t nominated for a “Best” award this year, I will be significantly let down, but I know there is some stiff competition this year. And they don’t have to win, but Sophie Nelisse and Emily Watson certainly have my unregistered vote.