The Book Thief - 6 stars out of 10
The perspective of “The Book Thief” is what makes it great. Unlike most Holocaust-era films, this story draws attention away from the concentration camps and puts it on the hardships and intimidation faced by the rational Germans. The film leaves some strong lasting images, particularly the book burning and the parade of Jews on their way to the concentration camp. There are many facets to the story, including a German family hiding a Jew, a love story, a girl’s fight to overcome illiteracy, and an adoptive mother’s change of heart. Unfortunately, the many different themes cause the film to move a little too slow to hold my interest. All of the events are important to the story (and I really enjoyed the story), but it just lost too much momentum throughout the film to keep me hooked. That being said, I loved the performance by Sophie Nélisse. With the amount of refinement in her acting, it is difficult to believe that she was only 13 when this was filmed. Most 13-year-old girls can’t even deal with their own emotions, but she was able to comprehend and portray the emotions of people from all walks of life in a German WWII community. I cannot wait to see her in another film soon. Geoffrey Rush was fantastic and I also enjoyed Emily Watson (though she isn’t my favorite actress). John Williams’ score magnificently pulls together all of the emotions and, although the critics blasted this film, it is definitely worth experiencing.