6.5/10
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The Giver (2014)

PG-13 | | Drama, Romance, Sci-Fi | 15 August 2014 (USA)
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In a seemingly perfect community, without war, pain, suffering, differences or choice, a young boy is chosen to learn from an elderly man about the true pain and pleasure of the "real" world.

Director:

Phillip Noyce

Writers:

Michael Mitnick (screenplay), Robert B. Weide (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
1,462 ( 193)
2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeff Bridges ... The Giver
Meryl Streep ... Chief Elder
Brenton Thwaites ... Jonas
Alexander Skarsgård ... Father
Katie Holmes ... Mother
Odeya Rush ... Fiona
Cameron Monaghan ... Asher
Taylor Swift ... Rosemary
Emma Tremblay ... Lilly
Alexander Jillings Alexander Jillings ... Gabriel 12 Months
James Jillings James Jillings ... Gabriel 12 Months
Jordan Nicholas Smal Jordan Nicholas Smal ... Gabriel 3 Months
Saige Fernandes Saige Fernandes ... Gabriel 6 Months
Renate Stuurman Renate Stuurman ... Dinah
Vanessa Cooke Vanessa Cooke ... Elder
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Storyline

After The Ruin, a civil but colorless, drug-dampened, equalitarian society eschewing memories of the past emerged, where everyone followed established rules of politeness enforced by a council of ever-watchful Elders. On the ceremonious day of graduation, teenagers leaving childhood are assigned careers chosen by the Elders. Jonas, who feels different from his appointed parents and his two best friends, Fiona and Asher, finds himself assigned to the rare position of Receiver of Memories, trained by a mentor (later called The Giver), who telepathically imparts memories of the world before The Ruin. Jonas learns emotions such as love, fear, excitement, loss and the concept of family, but when the planned elimination of a baby named Gabriel, whom he comes to love as a brother, enters his awareness, Jonas decides society needs to change, which the Chief Elder will do anything to stop. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil/revised by statmanjeff

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

You can make things better. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for a mature thematic image and some sci-fi action/violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site | Official site [Japan] | See more »

Country:

South Africa | Canada | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 August 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El dador de recuerdos See more »

Filming Locations:

Cape Town, South Africa See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$12,305,016, 17 August 2014

Gross USA:

$45,090,374

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$66,980,456
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jeff Bridges learned that his friend and fellow actor Robin Williams had committed suicide on the same night that the film premiered. It is apparent that Bridges was trying his hardest to hide his pain and prevent himself from crying during interviews on the red carpet. Both men had co-starred in The Fisher King (1991). See more »

Goofs

When Jonas runs from the nursery and passes through the first set of doors, the crib that is supposed to have Gabe in it is empty. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Title Card: From the ashes of The Ruin, the Communities were built. Protected by the Boundary. All memories of the past were erased.
Jonas: After The Ruin we started over, creating a new society, one of true equality. Rules were the building blocks of that equality. We learned them as Newchildren. Rules like: use precise language, wear your assigned clothing, take your morning medication, obey the curfew, never lie.
Jonas: My name is Jonas. I don't have a last name. None of us did. That day, the day before ...
[...]
See more »


Soundtracks

Ordinary Human
Written by Ryan Tedder
Performed by OneRepublic
Courtesy of Mosley Music/Interscope Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Giver Review
11 August 2014 | by jackgradisSee all my reviews

I know, I know, that score makes you want to hate on me already. First, let me say that I have read the book and really enjoyed it. It was thought provoking, emotionally engaging, and intelligent. Second, while I enjoyed the book, I am not passionate about it like some people are. So I went into the movie with a completely open mind, just wanting to experience the movie.

First, the positives. Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep are fantastic as expected. Both bring wonderful layers to their character. Also, the use of going from black and white to color was used real well to demonstrate what the characters see. The film looks good and is acted well.

Now my complaints. First of all, the setup of the supporting characters felt off to me. The society they live in have a certain set of rules that everyone follows because they were taught to their whole lives. But all the characters broke the rules multiple times in the beginning of the film. That takes you out of the overall feeling the movie is supposed to give you, the message it has to offer.

Next, while the book got you emotionally attached to Jonas and what is happening to him, the movie falls flat. Their are certain moments that have to have the audience fully involved emotionally, but just don't. That is a big negative unfortunately, because you want to care, but the film is too lazy setting you up for the emotional blow.

Finally, the pacing is way off. The middle part with Jonas coming to the realization of what is really going on, is rushed and he makes up his mind like that. That is the most important part of the movie, and sadly it is rushed. Then the movie slows down, and that leads to a VERY anti-climactic ending.

Overall, if you are a die hard fan of the book, then obviously you should see it. Who knows, I may be the only one who doesn't drink the coolade for this movie. But the tone and storytelling are to sloppy and the movie fails to get you emotionally attached. So the result is a mediocre film for me. I still recommend you see for yourself, but just ask yourself: Did I love the movie or did I want to love the movie because of the book?


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