Tuesday, August 13, 2013

‘The Book Thief’ movie: a first look

Ladies and gentlemen, our Soup for the Day is: tears of happy heartache with a dash of inexplicable excitement. This recipe is brought to you by the first images from the movie adaptation of Markus Zusak’s The Book Thief…and the announcement that it will be released November 15 of this year!

Seriously. Only a few hours ago, the only page-to-screen flick I’m extra-thrilled to see this coming November is Catching Fire. I’m aware that a movie is being produced for the Zusak bestseller, but I didn’t know they’ll be releasing it this soon. I can’t wait!

Here are the TBT stills circulating the Tumblrverse as we speak:

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The main character,  Liesl Meminger, will be played by newcomer Sophie Nelisse. “It was quite uncanny, this kid. I was taken right away,” says Director Brian Percival. “It was this mixture of naive innocence but at the same time she’s actually quite ballsy. You feel that you can get kneed in the groin at any point.”

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Perhaps my favorite among the six that came out, the still above shows Hans Hubermann (Geoffrey Rush) wrapping his foster kid Liesl in a light embrace. Just looking at it makes me feel warm and fuzzy—and perhaps a tad teary—inside. It's been a couple of years since I last read The Book Thief, and seeing this image sort of magnified the most heart-melting scenes I can remember from there. Ah, war-torn Himmel Street. I miss you and your earthly angels.

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And this one? Please don’t even start. Rudy Steiner crushed my heart.

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Here Liesl looks over as Max Vandenburg (Ben Schnetzer), the Jew the Hubermanns are keeping in their home, sleeps soundly. The relationship between these characters is perhaps the most intriguing in the novel. Hopefully, that same “pulling” factor will be translated well on screen. I loved Max to bits: he was a fragment of a boy who once had the stupid gallantry to face death, changed over time to a man whose strength now lies in words and fiction. A really good counterpart to Liesl, since both their lives were saved by the power of words. I'm looking forward to The Standover Man and his other stories!

More photos:

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I wonder how the movie will approach the Death-is-narrator slant. It's something I’ve always mused about when I heard they’re making a film off this. I’m guessing they will only use voice-over for Death, but they can always keep an actor behind closed doors to play the role. We’ll see. :)

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