The Reader aka aesthetics aren’t the only thing that make a film satisfying…


The Reader (USA/Germany, 2008)

Seen: Sunday, 12th April 2009 (cinema)
Runtime: 124′
Director: Stephen Daldry
Cast: Ralph Fiennes, David Kross, Kate Winslet
Production House: Mirage Enterprises, Neunte Babelsberg Film, Weinstein Company, The
Plot: (from imdb)

Post-WWII Germany: Nearly a decade after his affair with an older woman came to a mysterious end, law student Michael Berg re-encounters his former lover as she defends herself in a war-crime trial.

Scene From The Film

Impressions In Short
I loved Kate Winslet, thought David Kross, who played the young Michael, was pretty good and felt the rest of the film was totally generic, meaningless and empty. I mean it was aesthetically very nice - good cinematography, good music, good art direction etc. But that just wasn’t enough for me.

More About the Film
This is the third film directed by Stephen Daldry that I’ve seen and it seems like the most impersonal to me. As far as I’m concerned, it could have been directed by anyone. Craft-wise it was very correct, but IMO totally generic.
I also found the idea that for so many years nobody realised Hanna couldn’t read or write a little far-fetched (even though Kate Winslet did her best to make it as believable as possible).
Disappointingly, I felt Ralph Fiennes totally sucked as the older Michael Breg. The young Michael Breg was much better. I mean like I sort of understood from the acting why the young Michael doesn’t take any action during the trial. Why the older Michael doesn’t write back to any of Hanna’s letters I have no idea - Fiennes didn’t convince me that that was in Michael’s nature the way David Kross did. In fact Fiennes didn’t convince me of anything really :] He was just sort of there *sigh*
Kate Winslet, however, was awesome :) It’s great seeing her like this.

For Kate Winslet - yes, for David Kross - possibly (though I don’t suppose he has that many fans at this point in his career), for any other reason IMO no :] Although judging by how much praise this film has gotten on imdb, I’m clearly not in the majority on this one ;) My parents are in agreement with me though if anybody cares ;-P

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