Some of the 2013 Christmas presents from our kids were Film Vouchers so we took a morning out of our holidays and went to enjoy a Bridgeway film (and their super coffee) this week.
I had read ‘The Book Thief. My husband had not but it was my turn to choose. Having enjoyed Markus Zusak’s characters and his storyline but not some of his writing style, I was curious but not hopeful about a film adaptation. Well, we both sat – spellbound – as did the whole audience.
It is not often I prefer a film version of a book - but this film, set in Germany from around 1938 through to the end of the Second World War, captured and held me throughout those whole 2hrs 11mins. Settings (especially the rooms of the foster home to which Lisa is sent) the acting prowess of Sophie Nelisse , Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson, and indeed the whole cast, camera work and especially the voice of the narrator, Roger Allam - merged and mesmerized so that I heard hardly a sound from an equally enraptured audience.
Set in an ordinary German and Jew neighbourhood and seen through the eyes of a young girl whose life changes forever, this film has provided a depth to the book I surely missed in the reading. I have not seen such a film in many years. It is drama at its most powerful and it is born from a book!
This is Jean ‘Angel’ Allen hoping you read the book and see the film this New Year 2014.