What You Need To Know:
With the backdrop of the Holocaust, it seems obvious that the characters would have wrestled with their faith in God or in some other way acknowledged that faith. However, they do not. Instead, they look to a Romantic worldview for salvation. The movie happily contains only minor foul language. Also, the killing of Jakob’s father is done off screen. However, the movie’s “R” rating is well deserved for a couple scenes with sex and female nudity. While tastefully done, these scenes are still very graphic and erotic with images of the couples in bed together.
(Ro, H, B, L, V, SS, NN, A, D, M) Light Romantic worldview with light humanist elements but also some moral themes about the positive qualities of family love and adoption; three mild obscenities; light violent content where Nazi soldier kills a man off screen and Nazis take boy’s mother and sister away; two depicted sex scenes include a fornication scene and a married sex scene; upper female nudity and scenes with couples in bed together; use of wine; smoking; and, wife abandons husband who can’t let go of troubled past as a Jewish boy living under Hitler’s National Socialist tyranny.
FUGITIVE PIECES is a poetic, emotional movie that follows the life of Jakob (Robbie Kay as young Jakob), a Jewish Polish boy who escapes from the Nazis after his father is killed and his sister and mother are taken away. He is discovered by Athos (Rade Sherbedgia), a Greek archeologist who adopts him and raises him as his own son.
The movie flashes backwards and forwards as Jakob grows up (played by Stephen Dillane as adult Jakob) and struggles to overcome the haunting memories of the war. He is shy and reclusive as a boy and grows to be a somewhat awkward man. Working hard, he is finally able to finish the book of the Holocaust that Athos had started and then to write his own book, which is met with success. However, his first marriage dissolves because of his introspective sadness, and he moves back to Greece, where he had grown up. However, as he matures, he meets a woman, Michaela (Ayelet Zurer), and begins to have hope.
FUGITIVE PIECES is delicately and artfully crafted with eloquent characters. It is a lyrical movie, even when reminding viewers of the horrors of the Nazi era. Athos makes sacrifices in order to raise Jakob. His gentleness with the troubled boy is tender. The entire cast gives wonderful performances, especially young Stephen Dillane as the troubled, xenophobic boy who slowly comes out of his shell. Older Jakob, played by Stephen Dillane, gives an intelligent performance of a character who expresses his emotions with poetry and long, soulful looks. The movie is well made, though slowly paced. The music is understated, as are most of the production elements.
The love between Athos and Jakob is powerful and the love of family is a central theme. However, the main characters, most of who are Jewish, show no signs of faith in God. Jakob struggles but without calling to God and his ultimate salvation is a humanistic one. With the backdrop of the Holocaust, it appears obvious that the characters would have wrestled with their faith in God or in some other way acknowledged that faith. However, they do not. Since Jakob longed to connect with the family he lost, it seems as if connecting to their faith would have been a plausible place to start. However, instead, the story has a Romantic outlook and love of other people is elevated to the sacred.
The movie happily contains only minor foul language and the killing of Jakob’s father is done off screen. However, the “R” rating is well deserved for two sex scenes with nudity. While tastefully done, these scenes are still very graphic and erotic with upper female nudity and images of the couples in bed together.