May 17, 2012

The Reader, 2008

The Reader, 2008
Director: Stephen Daldry
Cast: Kate Winslet, Bruno Ganz, Ralph Fiennes

Stage: Home theatre, lovely Thursday evening

The Reader in short: THE READER opens in post-war Germany when teenager Michael Berg becomes ill and is helped home by Hanna, a stranger twice his age. Michael recovers from scarlet fever and seeks out Hanna to thank her. The two are quickly drawn into a passionate but secretive affair. Michael discovers that Hanna loves being read to and their physical relationship deepens. Hanna is enthralled as Michael reads to her from "The Odyssey," "Huck Finn" and "The Lady with the Little Dog." Despite their intense bond, Hanna mysteriously disappears one day and Michael is left confused and heartbroken. Eight years later, while Michael is a law student observing the Nazi war crime trials, he is stunned to find Hanna back in his life - this time as a defendant in the courtroom. As Hanna's past is revealed, Michael uncovers a deep secret that will impact both of their lives. THE READER is a story about truth and reconciliation...

Preps: Mmmm, saw this piece once upon a time. Kate Winslet is the best. Need to see this again.


Beautiful and touching story about a dame that wanted to be read to and had a romantic affair with a 20 year-younger student.. On the first look, obviously. Honestly? A breathtaking drama about a former prison guard in german camp, responsible for many deaths and selection of those that were later executed.

The movie has three parts; the first (romantic introduction). Kate Winslet is brilliant in the role of a dame that interacts with a younger student who doesn't have a true relationship with anyone, so he starts seeing her, reading to her and having sex with her. I love this part. This is also the part where you get to know her and like her.

The second part is the trial, where you find out that the person you liked, is actually under prosecution and on trial for commiting war crimes against women mostly. Now you are trying not to like her and hate her, because it is a sane decision to hate everyone that tortured people in german camps.

The third part consists of her being in prison and him growing up, sending her his voice over the tapes. The falldown of the lady, the rise with her learning to read and write, and then her remorsement and killing herself.

I believe all three could be divided into three separate movies, as I am eager and hungry for more content. On the other hand, they complement each other and make a beautiful scenario, story and feeling at its end. It brings out the issue of injustice in the court, as she is convicted also for writing something she couldn't possibly because of her incompetence. On the other hand, her former »boy« knows and doesn't reveal the truth, even though he has a chance. As we saw in Titanic, every woman has her secrets, also here every man can have his secret. She is his secret passion and desire from his juvenile age and he never lets go of her. A really lovely love story, which never had the chance to live, due to circumstances.

A truly good movie.

My personal rating:8,0 (I liked it a lot, it is one of the better formed dramas on the topic of WW2, carefully hidden in a love story).

The Reader on IMDB

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