I Am David (2004) In the old-school inspirational drama I Am David , a 12-year-old boy (Ben Tibber) escapes from a Bulgarian post-WWII labor camp armed with little more… 2004-12-03 PG PT95M Ben Tibber James Caviezel Elisabetta Bartolomei Maria Bonnevie Lions Gate Films
Movie Review

I Am David (2004)

MPAA Rating: PG
Jim Caviezel, I Am David | YAY, NO FLOGGING The faintly biblical title suits this feel-good postwar drama
Image credit: I Am David: Paul Chedlow
YAY, NO FLOGGING The faintly biblical title suits this feel-good postwar drama
EW's GRADE
B-

Details Limited Release: Dec 03, 2004; Rated: PG; Length: 95 Minutes; With: Ben Tibber; Distributor: Lions Gate Films

In the old-school inspirational drama I Am David, a 12-year-old boy (Ben Tibber) escapes from a Bulgarian post-WWII labor camp armed with little more than a compass, a bar of soap, a sealed letter to deliver in Denmark, and voice-over instructions intoned by a man whose identity becomes clear only after the lad has had his fill of fragmented flashbacks. Among the saviors in David's past is a fellow prisoner with the face of Jesus, or at least of Jim Caviezel, who looks beatific while breaking rocks. Among those in the present is a kindly old Swiss lady who speaks with the plummy diction of Joan Plowright.

Clearly, huge tankers of disbelief must be suspended in a sea of goodwill to get into the spirit of the film, which has been adapted with much care by writer-director Paul Feig (the creator of TV's Freaks and Geeks) from Danish author Anne Holm's well-loved young-adult novel known here as North to Freedom. The movie meets the requirements of the Life Is Beautiful school; those loyal to the tougher, more stringent Osama academy of realism need not apply.

Originally posted Dec 08, 2004 Published in issue #797 Dec 17, 2004 Order article reprints