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''The Boy in the Striped Pajamas'' (2008)

Updated on November 26, 2011
The boy in the striped pajamas movie poster
The boy in the striped pajamas movie poster
Bruno (Asa Butterfield) in The Boy in the striped pajamas
Bruno (Asa Butterfield) in The Boy in the striped pajamas
Schultz (Bla Fesztbaum) as the boy in ''The Boy in the striped pajamas''
Schultz (Bla Fesztbaum) as the boy in ''The Boy in the striped pajamas''
Bruno and Schultz playing a chess game during a scene of ''The Boy in the striped pajamas''
Bruno and Schultz playing a chess game during a scene of ''The Boy in the striped pajamas''
Bruno (Asa Butterfield) in ''The boy in the striped pajamas''
Bruno (Asa Butterfield) in ''The boy in the striped pajamas''

''Mother, what is that black smoke coming from that chimney at that farm?''

What are you supposed to answer to a kid who asks you that question when he has no idea of what is happening around him? When that black smoke is actually coming from a concentration camp? Humanity has had many dark moments in his history. Among them are the two big Wars in the 1910s and the 1940s. These two wars together represent ten years of manslaughter and violence among humans and millions of people died during these wars. Since then, several movies have hit theaters in order to show people what happened. Whether they are documentaries or movies, some of them manage to capture the essence and the atmosphere that was palpable during that era. Some of the great movies that attained stardom are ''Schindler's List'', ''Grand Illusion'' and ''La vita es bella'' with the excellent Roberto Benigni. I went to see this movie in the theaters and did not regret it.

Recently, another movie captured my attention in that category; ''The Boy in the striped pajamas''. Thanks to the movie poster of the movie, it's fairly easy to know that it's a movie based on the Holocaust because you can see a kid on a side of a fence with, well striped pajamas. The poster can also speak for itself. The fence between the two boys sets up a line between them but it also lets us imagine of a fictional frontier between two nations. One nation who was enslaved and imprisoned by the other, who was trying to be the supreme race.

This movie follows the son of a German high rank Nazi officer who is promoted to a higher rank and who is transferred to a new location. So the father, mother and the two children follow him. Bruno, his son, is our typical boy (and also the boy in pajamas). He likes playing outside with his friends and reads a lot. When they move to their new place, he has no neighbors and no new friends so he manages to do his usual stuff for a while until he eventually wants to explore his whereabouts. He is a bit naïve though as he does not know what a jew is and how they are being prosecuted by the germans. For him, his father is a soldier and does a perfect job for his country; he is a hero. Bruno has not the permission to go over the house limits but he eventually manages to sneak by and explore!

There is a Jew camp not far from the house and he meets a boy there, who is Jew and a friendly relationship builds up between them. Therefore, Bruno has no idea that he is a jew. For example, he thinks that the number on the prisoner suit of the kid is to play a game. But he does not worry for a second because he now has a new friend to play with and everything else is superficial for him.

The movie captures the essence of the horrors of war. Even if the story is told from the eyes of a young boy, many different aspects of the Hitler era are present in the movie and they are very well described. The only education he has is a tutor who comes home and he is only allowed to read the German Encyclopedia. As it happens in many of these Third Reich movies, the ending of the movie will leave some people speechless and emotions will fly through the roof. If you have a lady with who you can watch this movie it will be perfect, just remember to have some Kleenex nearby.

Give this movie two hours of your time and you will not regret it. The tempo might be a bit slow but it's a really cute movie that should not be missed by anyone.

My final rating of this movie is....4/5 stars!!

4 stars
4 stars
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

The innocence of childhood savagely collides with the Holocaust in The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. Bruno (Asa Butterfield) knows that his father is a soldier and that they have to move to a new house in the country...

 

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    • The Reminder profile image
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      The Reminder 5 years ago from Canada

      Monis Mas: Yes it is indeed a very sad movie.

    • Monis Mas profile image

      Aga 5 years ago

      I've seen this movie a few years ago. I got it as a gift, so I had to watch it. It is beautiful, very moving, very sad.

      Great review!

    • The Reminder profile image
      Author

      The Reminder 6 years ago from Canada

      montecristo:

      It is indeed a great and beautiful movie. One of my favorite!

    • montecristo profile image

      Angel Caleb Santos 6 years ago from Hampton Roads, Virginia

      Great movie. I saw it and was, almost, brought to tears. Voted up!

    • The Reminder profile image
      Author

      The Reminder 6 years ago from Canada

      Ohh you are right SUPPOSED is a verb in the past so eventually it takes a D. Hehe beginner mistakes and for the ROOF...I was looking at the birds outside ;).

      Thanks for correcting me I really appreciate it Hyphenbird.

    • Hyphenbird profile image

      Brenda Barnes 6 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

      They are small things and many people wouldn't even notice or care. Your review is so excellent though that I though you might. "emotions will fly through the ROUGH", should be ROOF, and What are you suppose to answer...SUPPOSED should be SUPPOSED. As I said these are little things and I think you have done remarkably well with translating. Regards, Hyphenbird.

    • The Reminder profile image
      Author

      The Reminder 6 years ago from Canada

      Hyphenbird:

      Thanks for the comment. For the spelling mistakes I always try to use some auto-correct thing to find them but some things they don't spot it. I am french native so the transition is sometimes hard. Where are some of the mistakes I did in the hub?

    • Hyphenbird profile image

      Brenda Barnes 6 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

      We watched this movie also. My little boy was saddened and wept at the ending. He is eight years old. It was a great opportunity to discuss that terrible period in history and how we can prevent it from ever happening again. I like your review. There are some spelling mistakes that you may wish to correct. Other than that, it could be picked up for a magazine.

    • The Reminder profile image
      Author

      The Reminder 6 years ago from Canada

      Stevennix2001:

      Thanks for the kind comment. I am slowly learning the basics of writing reviews. But you have been of much help because I write most of your reviews and it helps.

      Hope you will enjoy this movie as much as I did!

    • Stevennix2001 profile image

      Steven Escareno 6 years ago

      Pretty good review that you've written here. It's definitely the best one that I read on this movie by far. If I never would've heard about this movie way before you even brought it up a few days ago, then I would've been sold on this movie based solely on your review. However, since I already did know about the film before you brought it up, you've just given me a few more reasons to see it. Unfortunately, it might be a while before I get a chance to see it since I'm so far behind on my reviews as it is that it's not even funny. However, I'll definitely look this film over when I get the chance. Thanks again for writing this, and keep up the good work.

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