It’s rare that I like a movie better than a book. Often, if I really love a book, I never bother to see the movie because I don’t want to be disappointed. In the case of The Reader, I didn’t really love the book, and probably wouldn’t have read it if it hadn’t been for my book club. But I did read the book, and then watched the movie.
Personally, I believe the movie would have been hard to follow without first having read the book. But unlike the book, which left me lukewarm, Kate Winslet’s portrayal of Hanna Schmitz has stayed with me. I find her popping into my thoughts at the oddest times, and I have to stop and catch my breath. As an artist, Winslet brought Hanna to life in a way the book didn’t, and it’s clear to see why the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences awarded her an Oscar for her work in this movie.
There is something to say about good books and good actors. They make us think, and they make us feel. They help us see with different eyes and amplify our life experiences.