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The Book Thief (2013)

PG-13 | | Drama, War | 27 November 2013 (USA)
2:11 | Trailer

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While subjected to the horrors of World War II Germany, young Liesel finds solace by stealing books and sharing them with others. In the basement of her home, a Jewish refugee is being protected by her adoptive parents.



(based on the novel by), (screenplay)
2,120 ( 21)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 7 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Narrator / Death (voice)
Julian Lehmann ...
Gotthard Lange ...
Grave Digger
Nico Liersch ...
Ludger Bökelmann ...
Paul Schaefer ...
Nozomi Linus Kaisar ...
Robert Beyer ...
Jewish Accountant


In 1938, the young girl Liesel Meminger is traveling by train with her mother and her younger brother when he dies. Her mother buries the boy in a cemetery by the tracks and Liesel picks up a book, "The Gravediggers Handbook", which was left on the grave of her brother and brings it with her. Liesel is delivered to a foster family in a small town and later she learns that her mother left her because she is a communist. Her stepmother, Rosa Hubermann, is a rude but caring woman and her stepfather, Hans Hubermann, is a simple kind-hearted man. Liesel befriends her next door neighbor, the boy Rudy Steiner, and they go together to the school. When Hans discovers that Liesel cannot read, he teaches her using her book and Liesel becomes an obsessed reader. During a Nazi speech where the locals are forced to burn books in a bonfire, Liesel recovers one book for her and the Major's wife Ilsa Hermann witnesses her action. Meanwhile Hans hides the Jewish Max Vandenburg, who is the son of a ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

book | basement | girl | library | hiding | See All (77) »


Courage beyond words. See more »


Drama | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some violence and intense depiction of thematic material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:







Release Date:

27 November 2013 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ladrona de libros  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$19,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$105,005 (USA) (8 November 2013)


$21,483,154 (USA) (4 April 2014)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Everyone in Germany was expected to celebrate Hitler's birthday; in 1940, after World War II and Hitler's victorious position, towns would throw parades, as well as marching, singing, celebratory fires, etc. See more »


During the September 1939 scene, a boy on a bicycle holds a newspaper and excitedly exclaims Hitler has declared war. This is factually incorrect. Britain and France both officially declared war on Germany on 3 September 1939. Germany did not declare war on either nations. Hitler was hoping both Britain and France would come to the negotiating table as they had done previously over Czechoslovakia (The 1938 Munich Agreement). This led to a period known as "The Phoney War" when both side did little after the fall of Poland. The boy doesn't actually say that Germany declared war. His exact lines are, "England declared war on us! We're at war with England!" See more »


[first lines]
Narrator: One small fact: you are going to die. Despite every effort, no one lives forever. Sorry to be such a spoiler. My advice is when the time comes, don't panic. It doesn't seem to help.
See more »


Kampflied Der NationalSozialisten
Music by Albert Methfessel
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Simply Beautiful
30 November 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

9.5. I'd love to give it a 10, but having read the book, I know there were a couple of things they could have done to make it even better. The film was stunning nonetheless.

I had very high expectations going in and honestly, from the trailer, I was prepared for a let down. Nothing of the sort. The scenery was breathtaking and captivating, and I felt transported, insulated from the realities of a terrible war in a terrible time by the endearingly human performances of the actors and the depth they lent to their characters.

The only complaints I have would be slight spoilers for both the movie and the book and since I highly recommend both, I'll save them.

A powerfully emotional treat you won't regret. Go see it!

116 of 136 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

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Any explanation for the big plot hole? diogenes-13
demonizing the german language. leandro_t-a-t-u
Why did this only get a 49% on rotten? worldsoutro
Where was GOD :( jrenai67
Any Suggestions for Excellent movies In This Genre !!! vickyacoolboy2000
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