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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I am David dvd
A wonderful film with a beautiful ending. Joan Plowright's performance and the character of Sophie, brilliantly portrayed, brings the film to a most endearing and very touching end. Sophie's love for David, [probably matured from her own very sad loss of her little son] gives him space to open up in that love, and as a result, to be able to fall into the arms of his...
Published on 2 Feb 2011 by missionary b

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't watch it - read the book instead!
A parody of what is one of the most beautiful books ever written. This was always going to be a hard film to make, as the book is so much about the thoughts and feelings inside a boy's mind. However, even the basics are not done well in this film - there's good action in the book but the film doesn't even stay true to what could be easily reproduced; the story is...
Published 16 months ago by Kate Ashton


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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I am David dvd, 2 Feb 2011
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This review is from: I Am David [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
A wonderful film with a beautiful ending. Joan Plowright's performance and the character of Sophie, brilliantly portrayed, brings the film to a most endearing and very touching end. Sophie's love for David, [probably matured from her own very sad loss of her little son] gives him space to open up in that love, and as a result, to be able to fall into the arms of his too-long missed and dearly loved mum. I think David is adorable. It's not easy to act the part of a child traumatised by incarceration and abuse, but we see him in his struggles, in his determination not to be caught and returned, and responding to Sophie's love; a really good performance of David, and a great film. I recommend it.
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Tale of Courage and Hope, 19 Sep 2007
This review is from: I Am David [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
"I Am David" is a low-budget but finely crafted story of an 11 year old boy who has spent most of his short life in a Bulgarian Gulag during the horrors of the Stalin era. He escapes, with the help of his mentor Johannes, and the head officer of the forced labor camp, and is told to "Trust no one." Writer/director Paul Feig based his film on the bestseller "North to Freedom" by Anne Holm, and the script is intelligent and has sensitivity and depth. David makes his way through Greece and Italy, and into Switzerland, with the constant fear that he will be returned to the labor camp.

The cast is excellent, with Ben Tibber as the stoic and courageous David, and Joan Plowright, who adds to her lifetime of flawless performances here with the portrayal of Sophie, an artist who teaches David to trust in life and humanity. In the small but pivotal part of Johannes, Jim Caviezel is marvelous. This was filmed before he played Jesus in Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ," and some other actors in "The Passion" are also in "I Am David," notably Hristo Shopov (who was Pontius Pilate) as the head officer, and Francesco De Vito (Peter) as Roberto the sailor/truck driver. Director Feig has a cameo as an American whose car runs out of gas, in one of the more humorous scenes in the film.

The DVD features are good, and include interviews with producers and actors on how the film was planned and made, deleted scenes, and interesting commentary by Feig, where he shows us just how stringent his budget was, and how he had to cut corners. Despite the financial limitations, this is an inspiring film, as well as an entertaining one. "I Am David" makes wonderful family viewing, and will give younger audiences a glimpse into the Gulags behind the Iron Curtain of the early 1950s, and how the human spirit can conquer adversity.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't watch it - read the book instead!, 11 May 2013
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This review is from: I Am David [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
A parody of what is one of the most beautiful books ever written. This was always going to be a hard film to make, as the book is so much about the thoughts and feelings inside a boy's mind. However, even the basics are not done well in this film - there's good action in the book but the film doesn't even stay true to what could be easily reproduced; the story is changed where there's no need to change it and there is no real insight into David's thoughts. His whole character is mis-represented by the film (eg in the book where he first enters a house, he is overwhelmed by the beauty of the dining table and the very food he eats, and goes to great pains to preserve that beauty, getting annoyed by the children who are careless and get food on the table ... while in the film you see him clumsily and very carelessly chucking his spaghetti all over the place!!)

This was so awful I couldn't bear watching it - gave up about a quarter of the way through. If you've read the book, don't bother - this film will disappoint you terribly. If you've watched this film already, don't be discouraged - read the book for a wholly different and better experience!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Moving Story of one Boys Journey, 15 Jan 2012
By 
Tommy Dooley "Tom" (London, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: I Am David [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
This is a film version of the book of the same name (or `North To Freedom' in the States) by Anna Holm first published in 1963. As a child I read the book and could not remember all of it so was pleasantly surprised by this independent effort from director Paul Feig. David (Ben Tibber) is a 12 year old prisoner in a Bulgarian Gulag and the year is 1952. He can only ever remember life in the camp, but has fleeting memories of someone he knows loved him, but he can not seem to articulate why. The past is revealed in flash backs throughout the film and adds layers to the story

In the camp he has a friend Johannes -Jim Caviezel - who has very little on screen time actually. Life in the camp is unremitting and awful, so David is helped to escape. He has a sealed letter and is told to search for a bundle outside the fence. In it he finds some bread, water, a compass and a penknife. He is told to get to Salonika and then keep heading north until he gets to Denmark. There is one part when the truck he is hiding in gets stopped by the State Police and the other free riders are chucked off - the police says `You want to escape this paradise?' I am pretty sure that he is being sarcastic.

Any way David has to live by his wits and meets many people along the way, realising that sometimes you can trust and other times you most certainly can not. Ben Tibber does a great performance as David, who has to learn a lot of normal things even how to smile. In the book he has learnt a lot of languages from being in the camp, this he uses to blend in with the people he comes across, it is done all in English in the film with a nod that they are speaking another tongue - which may annoy some people, but it avoids sub titles. Along the way he discovers religion and a lot more besides.

This is a well made and acted independent film that was made with a lot of love. You can see that in the extras that includes interviews with cast and crew. I was totally absorbed and got a bit dewy eyed at a couple of points, but it is both endearing and heart warming - I might even re read the book now.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A lovely little film, 10 Oct 2011
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This review is from: I Am David [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
The ending of this film is a real tear-jerker, and though elements of the script are not really credible, the general thrust is not unreasonable as in the aftermath of the WWII there were huge migrations of population across the European continent. While I accept that the accent of the actor playing the boy is pure English, trying to mimic a hotchpotch of different accents would have resulted in nothing more than a pastiche. The viewer can easily fill in the gap for him or herself. Joan Plowright is excellent in the role of Sophie.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A film to watch with your grandchildren, 6 Mar 2010
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This review is from: I Am David [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
A lovely warm-hearted film which I would recommend for grandparents and children over 8 to watch together as the children may have questions to ask. My grandchildren were spellbound by it and so was I.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I am David, 14 Mar 2014
By 
ShanRay "Living to Listen" (Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: I Am David [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
I love Jim Caviezel as an actor and a person. I really enjoyed this DVD. His acting is always brilliant, and this show didn't let me down, as usual.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Must see this film, 13 Feb 2013
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This review is from: I Am David [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
Some might consider the story a bit weak in parts, but what makes this film a "must see" is the fantastic acting of the boy who plays the leading part.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very good interpretation of book, 22 April 2014
By 
P. M. Hunt "Philip Mark Hunt" (Perth, Western Australia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: I Am David [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
This film has now entered my top 5 of all time. It is a well presented presentation of the book.

I was disappointed though that they modified the exact nature of the ending, as compared with the original book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Memorable, 25 Feb 2014
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This review is from: I Am David [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
Loved the book and loved the film. Very heartwarming and full of hope. It would be a great film for teenagers.
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I Am David [DVD] [2003]
I Am David [DVD] [2003] by Paul Feig (DVD - 2007)
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