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THE READER

March 5, 2009

My friend and I went to the cinema last night.She’s invited me to see this movie, apparently an “OSCAR winner”.  The crowd was mostly adults and I think, quite “posh”. Anyway we took our seats and started munching some crisps, (we’ve also got bananas, chocolate mint wafers, jelly bears and what have you…halatang di kumain!). The picture started and everyone was silent that we both need to stop eating because everybody can hear us munching! So, we have to put down the crisps and eat the bananas instead, for they are not noisy to eat.

I know I have seen the trailer of the movie whereby Kate Winslet (Hanna) had an affair with a young boy. (I’ve seen the picture but I really don’t take notice of the actors’ names) I think the boy was portrayed by RON from the HARRY POTTER MOVIE, if I’m not mistaken.

The setting was in Germany and the story started with a 15 year old boy(Michael) going home fron school and being sick on the street, a middle aged lady (Hanna) came passing by and helped him and took him almost to his home. (I like the way Hanna refers to Michael as “Kid”).  To cut the story short the kid went back to where Hanna found him and looked for her. He found her and he started visiting her often…very often (I don’t want to detail whats happened, you have to see the movie yourself para me suspense). And whenever he visits her she makes him read to her.

Hanna left him so suddenly, to him for no apparent reason, to her beacause she was promoted and has to work in the office but she can’t for she is illiterate.  She dissapeared completely, Michael was distraught, I almost felt his pain, his heart, broken and crushed. Him, with nobody to cling on for what they had was unspeakable (still unspeakable  at this time of age if you’re on the same situation). Michael somehow moved on (but his whole being stayed in the past with her), continued studying…law. As part of his course he has to attend a seminar, to observe as a student. And there he heard her voice. Hanna in trial, with several women who were accused of letting 300 Jewish women die in a burning church when they were SS guards on the Death marches following the 1944 evacuation of Auschwitz concentration camp.I felt empathy for Michael. He was so inlove with her and seing her for the first time again, in that situation after she vanishes, the feeling is indescribable!

Anyway the court proceedings went on and Hanna was charged guilty to a life sentence imprisonment (Hanna testified, unlike her fellow defendants, she admitted that she was aware Auschwitz was an extermination camp and that the ten women she chose during each month’s were subsequently gassed. She denies authorship of a report on the barn fire, despite pressure from the other defendants, but then admits it when asked to provide a handwriting sample.) She ‘s concealling her secret that she is illiterate. And Michael realized this. 

These are the conclusions in my head as to why he let her be:  To protect both of them and secure the secret that he’s had an affair with an older woman and vice versa that will ruin him and what he’s achieved and ofcourse which will further ruin the lady; To respect her decision not to be known that she is illiterate, to respect what is left of her pride. Seemed a foolish decision, but it really made sense. What would have you done if you’re in Michael’s shoes? 

Michael’s  married and divorced, with a daughter whom in the end he told his whole story. When he lived alone after his divorce, he started taping, reading books to be sent to Hanna in prison for he knew she loved him reading to her. His gesture broke my heart. I know the love he felt for her. He was trapped in world he cannot live in and the only way he can connect with it is to be her reader. Hanna started to learn to read and write, counting the words which he taped then counting the words in the book she borrowed from the library.(“The lady with a little dog” was the title of the book) again my heart was stroked (Indeed this picture made me cry so much inside). She started writing him. One sentence at a time “Thanks for the …..kid”; “Did you receive my letter?” and so on… He never replied to her. But  time came that she was to be released, he was the only contact she has therefore he has to take responsibility for her. He accepted and decided to see her. He saw her, too much emotions were withheld. They agreed that shes going to be picked up in a weeks time, to live in a house he got for her and found her a sewing job.

Seemed so perfect! but in the end, she committed suicide, and for the second time she left him… this time forever….ending her life made all the sense i suppose. She cannot live with the guilt perhaps? She cannot give him anything anymore perhaps? She will only be a burden to him perhaps? No life ahead for her anyway for she is old and life outside her four walls has already moved without her and she wouldn’t cope perhaps? All for the the none-selfish reasons.

To him? He can let go of the past knowing that she is gone, none existing anymore that the only thing he can do is cherish the memory. Her death I suppose freed him from is agony.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. September 19, 2010 9:59 am

    Shit. Umiyak talaga ako sa film na yan. :((

  2. Twixy permalink
    March 26, 2009 3:08 pm

    I have the same opinion as yours on this. What you said is true.

  3. pandora permalink
    March 16, 2009 10:55 pm

    i think true love never lasts…. i just wish that people can accept oddities. nothing is perfect. i think what the world needs now is acceptance.

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