Sabine Kuegler's autobiographical "Jungle Child" is one of the best books I've read in the last 10 years. In it, she recounts her life as the daughter of a couple of German missionaries, living as a child with his family (that includes her parents, a brother and a sister) deep in the jungle of Indonesia's Papua (the western part of the island of New Guinea) working with the Fayu, an isolated tribe, still living in the stone age and in a stage of constant warfare, that has just decided to come forward to meet the rest of the world. Her story is enthralling. And an even big of a culture clash, was when Sabine returned to Europe at 17 years of age.
Now we have a film version of the book. The movie was filmed in Malaysia, and I found it interesting though less compelling than the book. The movie, almost two and a half hours long, is relatively faithful but a bit sanitized (for instance, the fact that they were missionaries goes almost unmentioned). Kuegler is played by Stella Kunkat as a child and by Sina Tkotsch as a teenager. Of the actors in the movie, the best known is Thomas Kretschmann, who has appeared in many German movies and plays here Klaus Kuegler, Sabine's father. The color photography is a plus.
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