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The Reader

My Life at the Movies is my heart, my mind, and film. A weekly blog with style and vision that’s taken me to places I’d never dreamed. Friday I watched my 90th theatrical film in my race to see 100 this calendar year. I’ve worked tirelessly to polish my eye and perfect my prose. With additional motivation coming from “The Golden Road,” I always have material to inspire me.

Though I’m running a different route next year, I’ll still stride atop the same yellow bricks. This year those bricks pave a path to trophies other than Best Film/Actor/Actress… awards like Best Blu Ray. Next year I’d like to enhance that statue’s title with a “Best Recommended” prefix. Today I’ll discuss my trail run.

A voice whispered in my ear that The Reader was worth seeing. Trusting the source I decided a 700k download wasn’t going to cut it. So I purchased the blu ray disc and gave it an honest viewing. This is the effort and attention I plan to give every recommendation I entertain in 2012. This is the grade of celluloid I hope you will all bring me in turn.

This 2008 film is based off a book by the same name. It is the parabolic tale of Germany’s struggle to deal with the Holocaust. Whereas most movies paint pictures punishing those involved and reverencing those who suffered, The Reader delves into the complexities of the reality. The ways of war are never a simple matter; we only pretend they are so that peace may prosper. In kind, the power of love is equally as detailed and difficult to decipher. Thus, the Reader mirrors the good with the evil so that the latter may be well lit.

The story surrounds an unlikely relationship between a brilliant boy and an illiterate woman. The individual who recommended this film to me described their connection as pure. Without question it is. Despite meeting Hanna (Kate Winslet) at a young age Michael (David Kross/Ralph Fiennes) builds a bond with her that is unbreakable. It transcends their separation, the ills she is forced to participate in, and the shame she spends a lifetime burdened by. Its love the way we all want it to be, the way we in our weakness ignorantly break free from.

But is pure completely possible? Truth be told you only live once, and no hands make it through unsullied. Every heart is broken, many a million times over. What we want is another’s to heal it, to stroke our scars and soothe our souls. The Reader is a tale of the bleakest and blackest acts put to rest with a kind kiss, the likes of which only true love can comprehend and offer. I’m glad this film was brought to my attention, I’d thought such romance dead and gone. However the art is alive and well thanks to stories such as this, and a blog called, “My Life at the Movies.”


  • Chris Elliott

    Nice piece, man. I saw this movie when it came out, and I must say, I agree with every point you made within. Both actors did a fine job justifying the magnificent story written for them. I don’t usually like period pieces, but if I have an opportunity to see Kate Winslet’s tits, I’m in. She’s a fox. But great piece. lol 

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