The Reader Can the endorsement of both the Oscars and Oprah's Book Club ever be wrong? Absolutely. But not here. Adapted from Bernhard Schlink's 1997 best-seller, The… The Reader Can the endorsement of both the Oscars and Oprah's Book Club ever be wrong? Absolutely. But not here. Adapted from Bernhard Schlink's 1997 best-seller, The…
Movie on DVD Review

The Reader (2009)

TEUTONIC NIGHTS: Kate Winslet awaits story time
Image credit: Melinda Sue Gordon
TEUTONIC NIGHTS: Kate Winslet awaits story time
EW's GRADE
A-

Details Release Date: Apr 14, 2009; DVD Release Date: Apr 14, 2009; Movie Rated: R; Genres: Drama, Mystery and Thriller; With: Ralph Fiennes and Kate Winslet; Distributor: The Weinstein Company

Can the endorsement of both the Oscars and Oprah's Book Club ever be wrong? Absolutely. But not here. Adapted from Bernhard Schlink's 1997 best-seller, The Reader is a three-hankie haymaker is a prestige picture that delivers. A teenage German boy (fantastic newcomer David Kross) tumbles into a passionate, secret affair with an older woman (Best Actress winner Winslet). He reads The Odyssey to her before rounds of steamy lovemaking. Then she vanishes and breaks his young heart. Years later, he rediscovers her when she is put on trial for war crimes committed as a guard at Auschwitz. Fiennes, at his icy best, helps stick the landing as the grown-up version of Kross' character in the film's flashback framing device. 
EXTRAS include a heap of deleted scenes (none of which are missed) and a peek at Winslet's old-age makeup regimen. A–

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Originally posted Apr 08, 2009 Published in issue #1043 Apr 17, 2009 Order article reprints