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"The Reader" works on a cinematic level - CinemaDave

Jan. 9th, 2009 09:33 pm "The Reader" works on a cinematic level

With "Revolutionary Road" and "The Reader," Kate Winslet enters Meryl Streep territory of double nominations. By inviting the audience to witness such emotional vulnerability, Winslet deserves her kudos on the awards circuit. April Wheeler from "Revolutionary Road" always seems to have an underlying desire under her skin. The character runs the gamut of emotions, it is not until her final scenes that one witness April true and vulnerable emotional core.

Winslet is even more revealing, both emotionally and physically, in **The Reader.** Based on Bernhard Schlink’s novel on the same name, Winslet portrays Hanna Schmitz, a woman who seduces a teenage boy named Michael Berg (David Kross). At the end of a memorable summer. Hanna disappears and Michael pursues law school. Years later, Michael attends graduate school. While observing a trial featuring Nazi War crimes, Michael learns that Hanna is a defendant for mass murder. As Michael (who grows up to look like Ralph Fiennes) matures, he realizes how Hanna influenced his adult life.

In terms of important subject matter, **The Reader** easily outshines **Revolutionary Road.** **The Reader** enhances it’s title theme and keenly reveals how a victim of illiteracy can grow into a monster. Kate Winslet is probably the only actress today that could pull off such an complicated role like Hanna Schmitz, bridging the emotional gap from siren to harpie. It is too bad that **The Reader** was released after I completed my Top Ten list for 2008.

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