The Book Thief
Directed by Brian Percival
Written by Markus Zusak and Michael Petroni
Starring Sophie Niélisse, Geoffrey Rush, and Emily Watson
Fox 2000 Pictures/Studio Babelsberg
Rated PG-13 | 131 Minutes
Release Date: November 8, 2013
Directed by Brian Percival, best known for his work on Downton Abbey, and based on the bestselling novel by Markus Zusak, The Book Thief centers on a young German girl named Liesel, whose Communist mother places her with foster parents during World War II. Her adoptive parents are a middle-aged couple, Rosa and Hans, and she quickly is told to call them “Mama” and “Papa,” which suggests they are to be her permanent parents.
Emily Watson plays her stern adoptive mother, while Oscar-winner Geoffrey Rush immediately wins Liesel, and the audience, over with his kindness, most vividly expressed in his warm, sympathetic eyes. Throughout, Rush’s character evokes humanity, morality, and compassion, and I truly came to love him.
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