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Movie Review: All the Light We Cannot See

Movie Review: All the Light We Cannot See

As the season of relationships approaches, a Netflix mini-series based on Anthony Doerr’s “All the Light We Cannot See” highlights a different form of long-distance friendship — before the age of social media and the internet.

Marie-Laure and Werner meet through a mutual acquaintance known to them only as “the professor,” who broadcasts his show late at night from pre-war France for the duration of World War II. Marie and Werner are on opposite sides of the war: Marie being a french citizen originally from Paris, and Werner being part of a Nazi radio team after being taken from his orphanage and sent to a Nazi military school.

Their love of “the professor” stems from listening since childhood, his inspiring words keeping both of them up late into the night. Because of this fond memory, Werner decides to disobey orders and hide the illegal broadcast from his superiors, especially when he determines that it is coming from Saint-Malo, where he is stationed.

The Netflix adaptation extends the book over four, hour-long episodes. This is not a case of a book’s cinematic form tarnishing the image of the original story. Though there are some differences, the mini-series is artfully constructed and, for some, may be more engaging than the book. The sequence of the opening scenes drops us directly into the conflict on the citadel and the paths of the two main characters and their adversary similarly to the original story. We watch as their slight links to each other are revealed long before their paths begin to intertwine tightly near the climax of the story. The storyline, complete with flashbacks for context and character development, is executed expertly, with each episode left on a cliffhanger. The mini-series is easily watchable in one night.

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About the Contributor
Claire Steigelman, Multimedia Editor
Claire Steigelman is a senior at CHS. This is her third year on The Communicator, and her second year as Multimedia Editor. She is currently nominated for the NSPA Multimedia Journalist of the Year Award. Outside of Room 300, she is part of the engineering sub-team for Zebrotics (FIRST Robotics Competition Team 5708) and has been playing violin in the Pioneer High School Orchestras for all four years of high school.  When not consumed by school, she loves to make art, spend time in nature, dream about high-speed rail and adore her cat.  

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