The Giver [2014] Movie Review Recommendation

The Giver [2014]

Wow, The Giver on this site, really? Well, yes, I guess that this review deserves a little intro. First here are the facts: it is the year of our lord 2014 and two almost exactly the same movies have hit the theaters this summer: Divergent and The Giver. They are both teen-oriented and dealing with a dystopian future. The characters in both of these movies are the same, the actors are the same, the budget is almost the same, and yet here’s the review of The Giver. Both of the movies are based on books, and this is the point when the distinction between the two of them becomes obvious. The Giver was written by Lois Lowry back in 1993, a children’s book writer with many awards, but more importantly a very wide scope of subjects dealing with racism, terminal illness, murder, and the Holocaust. On the other hand, Divergent was written in 2011 by a 23-year-old Veronica Roth and it’s basically a commercial rip-off of The Giver who was still in production when Divergent premiered. Those of us who are a bit more suspicious could say that this was all planned, a hot young writer who writes about teenagers who feel out of place with a movie that’s released three years after the book. But that’s none of my business :)

The Giver 2014 Movie Poster

That is some intro, so let’s cut to the chase: The Giver is a science fiction thriller that shows us the perfectly ordered human communities in the distant future. Everything that could pose a threat to this harmony has been eliminated and all the inhabitants of this enclosed system live out their lives in blissful ignorance of real-world Matrix. Everyone but one guy and his name was Jonas. Don’t worry, he’s got only one sister so the danger of bee-bop is relatively small. He has been chosen to receive the memories of past lives from The Giver. The memories that will change him forever…

Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep lead the youngsters Brenton Thwaites and Odeya Rush (I am so angry and aroused that they keep casting these jailbaits) through this movie and actually made it pretty damn good. The underlining story is full of different subjects that are so good for further discussion so the commercial/teenager element is easily forgotten. Is this the answer, what do you think? Is this the answer to all our problems and if you had the power to make that decision, would you do it? The futurist can think of only four possible outcomes for our planet: Mad Max, Blade Runner, The Giver, and Nothingness. I didn’t mention the Star Trek future since now I seriously doubt that we will survive this century.

In the end, I just have to address one of the things that irritated me the most: SPOILER ALERT: That fucking baby at the end of the movie, dear lord was that dumb. Driving a motorcycle, doing stunts on it, swimming, diving, scorching heat, freezing cold, and through all that one of the most unprepared young ones in the animal world makes it with just a red nose… I mean, come on :) That cyber crib was something else, he should have kept it but I guess they had to ditch it. I was just about ready to say hey this isn’t such an unrealistic movie when he showed up with it. Still, this is just the first part of the quadrilogy so they might explain later on that this is some super baby, the next Giver…

Director: Phillip Noyce

Writer:  Michael Mitnick, Robert B. Weide, Lois Lowry

Cast: Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep, Brenton Thwaites, Alexander Skarsgård, Katie Holmes, Odeya Rush, Cameron Monaghan

Fun Facts: Jeff Bridges had been trying to have the movie made for nearly 20 years and has even filmed a version of it with his family. Speaking on the Nerdist Podcast he said: “I originally wanted to direct my father in it, as a matter of fact, somewhere in some garage, there is a version of this movie with my father (Lloyd Bridges) playing The Giver, Bud Cortnar rates the whole thing, Beau’s kids, one is shooting it, one is playing Jonas. We did the whole book, so that’s around somewhere.”


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