Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Reader

The Missus and I rented The Reader tonight. It had recently hit the store shelves and The Missus and I were both interested in getting a pizza and movie with the plan to spend a quiet night at home seeming like the best suggestion I had heard in months.

We had both heard of The Reader yet neither had gotten to see it in theaters, not that that is at all unusual, we sat down after dinner to take in a movie.

I can only say one thing about The Reader.... damn.

Some movies you watch, like 300. Some movies you sit through like 10 Things I Hate About You. Some movies you quote at 2am in your local diner like Cool Running's, true story I swear. Some movies you watch time and time again, movies like Scent of a Woman. Lastly, some movies you experience on a visceral level, these are the movies that the word good just doesn't cut it. Movies that stay with you. Films like American History X, Schindler's List, Pans Labyrinth, and now the Reader. Films so stunningly powerful they beg to not only be re-watched but shared, passed on, treasured.

The Reader is not a complicated film, at least on the surface, it's a film about a woman, and a young man, a short, passionate affair and the lasting effect such contact can have on both parties. There is a trial, and a secret too, though these provide the vehicle, not the substance for the story. The Reader reminds me of Snow Falling On Cedars, another story where the "story" is nothing more then a vehicle to tell the emotional story of the participants.

The Reader is a simple, elegant, uncomplicated yet wholly engrossing piece of cinema. Watching the movie unfold is both torturous and yet I found myself both anticipating and dreading the next scene, the writing, the dialog was minimalist, elegant and uncomplicated.

I find myself struggling to articulate exactly what is felt at the end... I don't think any words I could use would do it justice.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'll go rent Reader. Thank you for the recommendation.