Friday, June 5, 2015

"Rico, Oskar und die Tieferschatten" (2014)

One of the more enjoyable movies of 2014 is one that not many of my readers will have seen. …Or had the opportunity to see. It is a kid’s adventure story set in Berlin, based on a German book of the same name. And, it is in German, thus the slim chance that many will see it, as English audiences don’t watch movies in another language, much less kid’s films.

In English, when a kid is super smart we call them “gifted.” Germans call such kids “highly gifted.” Rico is a “lowly gifted” kid. In English you would call that “challenged” or “special.” He lives with his mom in Berlin during a time when the city is in a panic over a serial kidnapper. One day, he meets Oskar, who is “highly gifted.” They become friends, but the next day when Oskar is supposed to visit, he doesn’t show up. Then the news breaks: Oskar has been kidnapped! It is up to Rico to solve the mystery and save his friend.

It is a fun and quirky story, but it also has a lot to say about people with learning disabilities. I wish it would become available for English audiences. The book might be and it is a good read too. It is the first of (so far) a trilogy of books, and the second film is coming out here in Germany next week.

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