The Book Thief - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Book Thief Reviews

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½ May 6, 2017
Heartbreaking, emotional and tragic, The Book Thief is a another side of WWII that we haven't seen often in movies. Solid and with a strong performances by the cast, even if his third act lost a little bit of momentum, overall is a powerful drama. (3,5/5)
½ May 6, 2017
I think this film is the perfect example of the way that narrative techniques that work brilliantly in book form can fail to fit when adapted to a visual medium. The narrator of the film is Death himself, not a skulking beast as often portrayed, but a compassionate and unyielding force of nature with a curious and mostly harmless attachment to the lead character. This narrative conceit worked very well on the page, where every word comes from the narrator's lips, but in film not every moment can be narrated or it quickly becomes a "and then I watched as she brushed her teeth" type of drain. And what that means is that the narration is only intermittent and utterly out of place with the rest of the fairly realistic setting.

Given the focus on death, you'd expect the film to deal a lot with the pain of loss and the heartbreak of war. You'd be wrong. Losses do come and they do hurt people, but for the most part they're just passed over in silence. And most of them happen in one big (literal) burst at the end, leaving us with nothing to do but wrap up. And it's here that the painfully sympathetic Death really stands out like a sore thumb. Because when Death is such a friendly presence why are individual deaths tragic? It can probably be made to work, but it doesn't here.

In the end I felt nothing. And that's a real shame because the movie is blessed with some extremely strong performances. That's to be expected from Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson obviously, but the child actors are truly first rate as well. Particularly the lead girl and her close friend. They never felt stagey or out of step with the reality of the piece. The film had some wonderful production values too, really capturing the feel of everyday life in Nazi Germany.

I appreciated their avoidance of many of the cliches I've come to expect from such films. I waited till the very end for her friend in the Hitler Youth to sell her out, or consider selling her out, or even be conflicted about her obvious distaste for the Nazis, but it didn't happen. He actually joined in on her bandwagon. Unfortunately, in avoiding cliches it failed to provide any real substitute for the drama those cliches are there to produce. And as such, I left the film feeling empty and unsatisfied, for all that the cast and tone made me want to enjoy it.
½ April 26, 2017
I never read the book, but I enjoyed the movie. Good performances. The Christmas scene made me laugh. Took me a while to appreciate & understand the narrator.
½ April 22, 2017
Good story but not gripping and the characters lacked depth. Emily Watson and Sophie Nelisse were brilliant.
April 15, 2017
This is a great film well worth watching if you like a film with a story, an intelligent well thought out film a hidden gem
April 8, 2017
Nothing compared to the book
April 8, 2017
A definite classic. Beautiful cinematography. Amazing story from a different view of WWII Germany. Did the book justice. Loved the acting. Can't praise this movie enough!
½ April 2, 2017
The Book Thief is an amazing story. I found it very interesting and quite touching. If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend that you do so. Though, I regret not reading the book, I am glad that I decided to watch the movie beforehand.
March 27, 2017
First, I read the book. Then, as soon as it was available, I downloaded the movie. I don't understand the negative reviews. All I saw was a masterpiece.
½ March 18, 2017
The ending should've been better in my case. But overall a nice film. Loved the narration.
½ February 20, 2017
A disgraceful adaption!
February 12, 2017
1993's Schindler's List Is My Fifth Favorite Film Of All Time.
February 7, 2017
I haven't read the book this was based on, but the movie was quite watchable. It was just a little too sentimental in parts for my liking.
½ January 26, 2017
RECOMENDABLE: Sophie Nelisse desparrama dulzura como Liesel Meminger, una niña que es enviada por su madre para ser criada por una familia de clase media baja en el contexto de la Alemania Nazi y en pleno estallido de la Segunda Guerra Mundial. En Ese ambiente, Liesel trata de adaptarse a la escuela y a su nueva familia, y empieza a descubrir un nuevo mundo a través de la lectura. Fascinada por el primer libro que pudo terminar de leer tan pronto como aprendió, se verá ávida por nuevas historias y aventuras en aquellos libros que lea, que son su pasión. Desde su inocencia y su inteligencia aprenderá a afrontar los duros dramas de lo que esta guerra significó para aquellos que desde Alemania no estaban de acuerdo con las políticas hitlerianas.
½ November 21, 2016
One of the worst movies ever made
½ October 17, 2016
I jus saw the movie on cable, and i wonder about the review and find out rotten tomates did fresh this movie, really the movie great !!
½ October 5, 2016
A film beautifully adapted from a great novel! Stellar performances from each cast member!
½ October 1, 2016
Tries to be complex, but fails by all accounts. Some brilliant cinematography, but altogether a lengthy sweet pie. Holocaust becomes cozy and kitschy with John Williams as fidller on the roof.
September 6, 2016
I loved the book and loved the movie. Best movie since Disney's Pollyanna! Love the cast!
August 20, 2016
I believe some critics were a bit too harsh in judging this film. I found it beautiful, touching and inspiring, well- written,masterfully acted and directed.
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