For this month’s next review for Genre Grandeur – Alternate Love Story Movies, here’s a review of The Reader (2008) by Kim of Tranquil Dreams
Thanks again to Abbi of Abbiosbiston.com for choosing this month’s genre.
Next month’s Genre has been chosen by Tim of FilmFunkel We will be reviewing our favorite Found Footage movies. In order to get a better idea as to what this genre might include, check out this post by Tim.
Please get me your submissions by the 25th of December by sending them to TisTheFFSeason@movierob.net Try to think out of the box! Great choice Tim!
Let’s see what Kim thought of this movie:
Director: Stephen Daldry
Cast: Kate Winslet, Ralph Fiennes, Bruno Ganz, David Kross, Jeanette Hain
Set after the World War 2 in Germany, Michael, now a law student spectates the case of the war crime. One of the accused is a woman, Hanna, who he had an affair with almost a decade ago. As he watches the trial, he relives the relationship they have and start realizing certain details of why their relationship ended mysteriously.
The Reader is a very recent watch for me. However, it is a fantastic alternate love story. The story itself carries a compelling tale about ethics in war. Its hard to justify the actions of being right of who Hanna was to choose going to be a guard at the camps. However, the age difference and the different views of the relationship between Michael and Hanna becomes a center point. Their relationship is both passionate and emotional. She would love him reading to her. In the end, he learns the reason and their relationship is one that becomes a first love for Michael and causes him to live in its effects years later, turning him into the man he eventually becomes.
A story is powerful but The Reader has quickly become one of my favorite alternate love stories because of the cast. I’m on record to love Kate Winslet a lot. She is a phenomenal actress and one that fits very well in the role of Hanna Schmitz. The young actor playing opposite her is David Kross who does a great job in the role as the young Michael Berg who goes through being in love and having it end unexpectedly, then facing it all over again. Its a lot to face and the chemistry he builds between Kate Winslet is full of passion and romance even if its focus was only for the first half of the movie. The older Michael is played by Ralph Fiennes and he is great. Despite not exactly having the same role, he is the final person of who Michael becomes and the stage where we see a much more mature relationship with Hanna. It carries a much stronger feeling.
What makes The Reader not the typical love story aside from the age difference being peculiar for this relationship is also that its how love makes someone grow. Its the power of first love. It all seems wrong and atypical but in the end, the pull of Hanna is strong for both of them. It surpasses the physical romantic aspects because their relationship is full of emotions showed through the stories he read to her. It built them into the characters and we learned a lot who Hanna was and it was a coming of age for the character of Michael. For that, it deserves a spot in this genre grandeur as an outstanding alternate love story.