January 01, 2005

I am David

Writing about web page http://www.iamdavidmovie.com

I am David--a movie on Life

You probably have never heard of me. I am David(Ben Tibber), a 12 year old boy and have grown up as an enemy in an Eastern European Communist concentration camp in Bulgarian because of the war. I lived there like others, being forced to break up rocks into gravel under the merciless prodding of sadistic guards.

Still remember, it was the year of 1953 that I tried to escape, guided by a man in the camp. To be honest, I donít know the reason that I was sent there but I was kept informed of the importance of life. I knew it would be difficult for a 12 year old boy to escape a place like that but it was the passion to stay alive that strengthened my desire and courage. I finally tried.

I succeeded. I escaped that cruel and harsh imprisonment. I ended it and was finally free from it. However, what I only had was nothing but a bar of soap, a compass, a half loaf of bread and a sealed letter to Copenhagen, of which I had no idea. I had to cross the border, travel through Greece, Italy and Switzerland to my destination in Denmark. Facing this long odyssey for a boy like me alone, I was afraid and the memories of that period of life in the camp would once in a while come to my mind but I was lucky enough to get into rides on trucks, got over the border to GreeceÖ I tried to continue with the warning of Ďtrust no oneí. I dared not to open myself much but kept every fare within and everything hidden.

Surely I have everything experienced and met different people on my way, the ship man, the Italian baker, the girl I saved from fire and the Swiss artist. Among them, it was through this Swiss artist (Joan Plowright) who cracked my defenses in trusting others. It was from her that I found the moral compass, a guide, and that there are people whom I can trust. Then, coincidently, I found…and I told her…. Oh….

Things I donít like about this movie:

  • Saving the girl, her touching Davidís hands while praying
  • Deliberate depiction of religion-related contents
  • Ending is in a bit a rush

Things I like:

  • Life: Presumably the story is true, is our life hard still?—ours are much better!
  • Kindness: Trust people, kind people still overnumber the evil!
  • Love: Donít be mean to share love and trust!
  • Hope: Have hope on life!

See what the director (Paul Feig) has said:

  • "The film is about how you get back your faith in people,"
  • "It's about overcoming the fear and mistrust, and becoming more hopeful about human nature."
  • "David has to learn not only how to get by on his own in alien surroundings, but also how to trust people and believe in their goodness,"
  • The challenge was to get people to relate to David's dangers. "Few of us have ever been exposed to true injustice and persecution. It's hard to comprehend that some people must risk everything for what others take for granted."
  • "This is a film for everyone, both kids and their parents,"
  • "If we had shown the most gruesome violence in graphic detail, it would have taken away from the real message of hope."

- 3 comments by 1 or more people Not publicly viewable

  1. This certainly was a good plot, but there were way too many things I didn't like about it.
    1. The acting of the role of Johannes (Jim Caviezel)
    2. The supernatural abilities of David to magically understand all sorts of languages.
    3. The title – it doesn't at all reflect the essence of this film. Reminds me of Jackie Chan's Who am I. Sounds like a film about a romatic hero with identity issues, when it actually is about cultivating abilities to love, hope and trust.
    4. I also didn't like the touching of hands over the dinner table. I think it freaked David out rather than introduced him into a new realm of feelings.
    5. Totally agree with your point about the ending being way too abrupt. It could have been better rounded.

    However, I have to say that I quite liked the music, the absolutely amazing scenery and I very much enjoyed David's (Ben Tibber) performance.

    01 Jan 2005, 16:43

  2. I've not seen the film, but it sounds very much like the book (by Anne Holm), especially the way you say the ending feels rushed. The book has the same title: it reflects the way David develops a sense of independence, and is what he says in the book when he prays to a God he understands very little about.

    If I remember correctly, Johannes was David's mentor in the camp (in the book it was a concentration camp, not a labour camp)? It was Johannes that taught David a lot of the things he needs to know in the outside world, including languages – David understands so many because there were people of many nationalities in the camp with him.

    01 Jan 2005, 17:06

  3. When the girl was reaching her hand, I just….Oops…It has obsolutely degraded this movie!

    It seems to be Johannes who did the mentoring and instructing in the movie, but tends out to be the head guard who did it for me at the end. I actually didn't catch to realise David's langauge ability, which definitely can't be true like Lu said. I am sure that you enjoyed the reading better, Simon.

    01 Jan 2005, 17:59

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