The Book Thief | Chicago Reader

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Rated PG-13 · 127 minutes · 2014

Drama, Historical Drama
As Germany descends into the nightmare of Nazism, a preadolescent girl discovers the power of literature; I guess that means there's hope for humanity after all. This plush, mawkish period drama, adapted from Markus Zusak's 2005 best seller, might be useful as a means of introducing the Holocaust to small children, but it's indefensible on almost any other terms. Every scene—even the re-creations of Kristallnacht and a Nazi book burning rally—looks as if it were designed for a department store window. There's a similar hard-sell quality to the Oscar-grubbing performances, the patronizing John Williams score, and the plenitude of adorable children. Brian Percival, a veteran of British TV, directed; with Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson.
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Director: Brian Percival
Producer: Karen Rosenfelt, Ken Blancato and Redmond Morris
Cast: Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson, Sophie Nélisse, Nico Liersch, Ben Schnetzer, Levin Liam, Barbara Auer, Roger Allam, Kirsten Block, Carina Wiese, Hildegard Schroedter, Sandra Nedeleff and Mike Maas

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