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I Am David

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Imagine a boy growing up in a Communist work camp behind the Iron Curtain in post-WWII Eastern Europe. He has no idea who he is, who is parents were/are, why he is there. He has one friend, a man who is also a prisoner, but who also knows nothing about the boy's history. The friend tries to teach the boy a few good values, but all the boy sees around him is fear, suffering, death, evil. Then he is given the opportunity to escape, with the simple instructions to go to Denmark, to not open the envelope until he gets there, not to tell anyone about the camp. That is all the boy knows and that is all we know, until his memories start to congeal and begin to reveal the meanings of the recent and the long past. In the meantime, he learns about real life outside the camp: the good, the bad, the funny, the loving world out there. . .

Why do I rate this as one of the best? This is a movie that stays real, never gets sappy. The acting is superb. The boy, David, played by Ben Tibber, (Tiny Tim in the Patrick Stewart version of A Christmas Carol), has the unusual ability to hold our attention and tell his internal story in every scene of the movie with very little dialogue. James Caviezel (Jesus, in The Passion of the Christ) plays the friend, Johan. Every subtle detail of his acting tells us the story, again with little exposition or dialogue. Joan Plowright plays a kind artist who unlocks David's heart. The cinematography, the editing, the writing, and, of course, the directing all work to keep me engrossed for every minute of the film. (The writer/director is Paul Feig, who also acts in a small comical role.) Every time I watch it, it strikes a deeper chord.

Have you seen it? Rent it ASAP and let me know your thoughts.

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(Which is our abbreviation for "The thread for this movie is over there". :) )

I nominated this for the 100 spiritually significant movies list. I did not find your previous topic on it, but knew there needed to be a discussion for it to be in the nominations list. Sorry about the repeat.

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