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Kelsey's Review

Created May 22, 2008 02:12AM PST • Edited May 22, 2008 02:12AM PST

  1. Quality
  2. Perfect 5.0

    The Kite Runner is the film adaptation of Khaled Hussein’s novel of the same name. The film seems to at least follow the basic plot very closely. More importantly, it brings life, humanity, and surges of emotion and struggle to the screen. The atmosphere of Kabul, Afghanistan is shown to us through several different stages in the history when our characters lived. This is the town of our main their childhood and a critical element in the story that we end up going back to. Being in Afghanistan this is a very intense, violent, and at times very hard to watch film. Forster and Benioff managed to keep a youthful feeling at the beginning and as we go along even as that seems to be lost we still see hope and attempts to achieve happiness in a more peaceful environment.
    Amir (Ebrahimi) and Hassan ( Mahmidzada) are extremely close friends, practically inseparable. Hassan’s family has been Amir’s family’s servants for forty years. Amir’s father, Baba (Ershadi) has always treated Hassan and his father very kindly, as if they were his own family. Both Amir and Hassan get picked on a lot. Others bully them calling them faggots. Hassan receives hate for being Hazara. Many in the town feel that these Hazaras are just polluting their land. Hassan won’t listen to this nonsense though, as he constantly sticks up for not only himself but especially for Amir. Hassan ends up being like Amir’s body guard. No matter how insulting or degrading other’s treatment to Amir and Hassan is, he just doesn’t seem to have it in him to fight back, even with his words. This ends up becoming a dangerous problem down the line. Amir and Hassan have a love and passion for kite flying. They compete with some of the other boys, but the others always seem to win. One day though, Amir and Hassan win. The others are jealous about this and take out their anger on Hassan. Amir shortly finds out about this and follows them. A few older boys who continuously pick on Hassan demand that he give them his new kite and they will let him go. Hassan, being as loyal as he is to Amir, claims that it is not his kite to give away and ends up terribly beaten, walking away blood dripping from him.
    Amir and Hassan simply don’t have the same relationship after this, knowing that Amir could have at least tried to stop what happened. Soon after, Hassan and his father move away and it is not long before Amir and Baba will have to do the same. The Soviets invade, desperate to find a way out Baba and Amir are smuggled out of the country. Years later, Baba works at a gas station in California where Amir (Abdalla) has just graduated from college. Soon he sets his eye on the general’s daughter, Soraya (Leoni). They spend time together, talking about literature including some of Amir’s stories that he has enjoyed writing since he was a little boy. Amir and Soraya soon after get married and Amir gets his book published. Baba is very sick though so they do what they can for him. It turns out that there might be somebody who needs Amir even more. He gets a call from an old friend of his father’s who was a major influence on his life, especially as a young writer. So he feels the need to visit him. When Amir gets there he tries to help him in his sick state, but his new mission is to save Hassan’s son. He has been taken by the Taliban and Amir might be the only one who can save him from that life.

  3. Perfect 5.0

    The acting all around was incredible. It almost seems pointless to single anyone out as each and every person shown on screen here did magnificently, conveying so much emotion and struggle. Khalid Abdalla definitely shows a lot of strength in his role of Amir, which is a pivotal quality for him. By the time he is able to show and act on this ability, the circumstances and terror around him are so extreme, that is puts us on the edge of our seats as the audience. We need him to succeed with what he is trying to do. Homayourn Ershadi does a fantastic job as well as Baba. He shows a lot of decency and good-hearted actions through Baba. Baba is a firm believing in fighting for what is right, even if it isn’t the easiest thing to do at times. He follows this for others even when his life is threatened with it.

  4. Male Stars Perfect 5.0
  5. Female Stars Perfect 5.0
  6. Female Costars Perfect 5.0
  7. Male Costars Perfect 5.0
  8. Perfect 5.0

    The only small complaint I have is that I would have liked to see what becomes of Hassan’s son down the line. He seems fairly unstable at the end, which is completely understandable given everything that he’s been through. Even if it takes awhile for him to get used to the new atmosphere and the people around him, it would have just been nice to see how he adjusts and what his life ends up being like. What we see of him seems completely natural and understandable though. The Kite Runner is a wonderfully written, directed, and acted film that deals with a darkly delicate situation with precision while still showing light, love, and human capabilities that captures the audience completely.

  9. Direction Perfect 5.0
  10. Play Perfect 5.0
  11. Music Perfect 5.0
  12. Visuals Perfect 5.0
  13. Content
  14. Sordid 3.1

    There is a lot of violence in this film, but it is necessary violence. We really need this to have an understanding of the conditions are characters are going through and just what this violence means for them. The Kite Runner can be hard to watch. One of these scenes is when Amir and Hassan are younger and Hassan is being threatened if he doesn’t give away the kite. Although, Amir has shown fear in standing up to others the severity of the situation makes you think that this time will be different. Especially since Hassan is being told that he means nothing to Amir and isn’t even his true friend. Hassan remains to be brave and loyal though, sticking up for Amir. The question is asked, would he do the same for you? As we see Amir not getting any closer to stepping in, just moments from running away from Hassan almost permanently, it is very painful for nearly everyone inside and outside of the film. The shame of this for Amir came to be too much and the knowledge that Hassan hurt too immensely. Another very disturbing scene comes when Hassan is no longer around and Amir is back in Afghanistan trying to find Hassan’s son so he can save him and fight for his life they way that he should have fought for Hassan. A women accused of adultery is being publicly punished by the Taliban as they pummel her with stones. The Taliban claim this to be an act of God as they are punishing for sins. Others around are even in jeopardy just by looking at them. It makes you question whether this women really did anything wrong. Either way what is being down to her is still humiliating, degrading, unjust, and murder. The crowd remains to cheer though as the Taliban make it seem like they are actually helping the country and being religiously moral through these horrific acts. Also what is interesting is that one of the boys who bullied Amir and Hassan as children ended up being part of the Taliban, showing that violence can only lead to more violence. When we can’t even get along with our peers, hate and beliefs of superiority over others just lead to warlike atmospheres. Through out different characters and mind frames there is a lot of overall hate displayed. There is hate for communists, Russia, Hazara people, America, and homophobia just to name a few things. All of this hate is responsible for the terrors that are around.

  15. Sex Erotic 3.1
  16. Violence Brutal 3.1
  17. Rudeness Profane 3.1
  18. Natural 1.0

    The realism in this film is really chilly, and it hits you hard. It’s hard to picture ourselves in the scenario of our characters. Getting away from a place like this only seems logical, but is staying, trying to make things better for others more beneficial in the long run? The more people that leave, the more select the target is, putting those that stayed in even greater danger. The Kite Runner explores what is right and it seems that in situation this bad, no matter how moral your actions are, there is still so much immorality going around. Doing your best to overcome this personally and to open up freedom of life to those who need it the most is what is important.

  19. Circumstantial Natural 1.0
  20. Biological Natural 1.0
  21. Physical Natural 1.0


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