How The Giver Gets It Wrong

August 29, 2014 6:35 PM

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Since I'm always intrigued by cinematic visions of the future, I checked out The Giver, the new movie based on the 1993 children's/young-adult novel by Lois Lowry. I can't say whether the movie does justice to the book, which I haven't read, but taken by itself, the screen version, directed by Philip Noyce (Rabbit-Proof Fence, Salt), is one of the most simple-minded and irrelevant works of fiction I've ever seen. I'm surprised that Meryl Streep (one of the stars) and the Weinstein Company (producer and distributor) got involved in this dunderheaded project that Jeff Bridges (the other major star) has been trying to get done for almost 20 years.

The movie depicts a futuristic society intended to be utopian in which everyone is economically equal and competition has been eliminated. We are led to believe that such a world would be horrible. That may be true, but what relevance does this idea have to today's America, where the rich are gettin...

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