World War II drama comes up short
“The Book Thief” has its moments of brilliance, thanks in large part to an adept cast, led by Geoffrey Rush and newcomer Sophie Nélisse. But the movie about a girl adopted by a German couple during World War II also crystallizes the perils of book adaptations.
Based on a bestselling novel, the movie tries heartily to contain writer Markus Zusak’s myriad plot points, but the result is a rushed conclusion, which tempers the intended tear-jerking climax. There is plenty to create an emotional payoff and a healthy dose of suspense. But director Brian Percival’s film squanders the opportunities by squeezing other subplots into the two-hour run time.
The DVD and Blu-ray (Fox, $30-$40) add deleted scenes.
Colin Covert says: “The Book Thief” preaches wholesome messages (tyranny bad, literacy good), but it is so dull and mawkish that it’s more effective as sedative than sermon.
Also out Tuesday
Movies: “Barbie: The Pearl Princess,” “The Broken Circle Breakdown,” “Homefront,” “Inside Llewyn Davis,” “Lego Star Wars: The Yoda Chronicles,” “Out of the Furnace.”
TV: “Big History” (Season 1), “Diagnosis Murder” (Season 8), “Rogue” (Season 1), “Trinity” (Season 1), “Vikings” (BBC).
Blu-ray: “George Washington,” “Gunfight at the O.K. Corral,” “El Dorado,” “Hatari.”
Work on the go with QuickOffice
One of Google’s lower-profile apps, QuickOffice (free for iOS and Android) has value for those who do a lot of work on mobile devices.
The app differs from Google’s other major office productivity app, Google Drive, in small but key ways. QuickOffice’s main appeal is that it works with Microsoft Office file formats, even if they’re not stored on Google Drive. So if you get an e-mail with a Microsoft Office file you want to edit, you can open it in QuickOffice right from the attachment.
QuickOffice also offers more flexibility in general — it’s a stronger editor than Google Docs and has an easy interface that makes it simple to use. It’s not going to replace your computer for composing long documents, but it is a great tool for when you’re on the road.
Those who used the product before Google acquired it will be disappointed with QuickOffice. Since then, the app has lost integration with services such as Dropbox.
Top 10 games of March
1. “Dark Souls II” • 2. “Titanfall” • 3. “Strider” • 4. “Shadowrun Returns: Dragonfall” • 5. “The Last of Us: Left Behind” • 6. “Our Darker Purpose” • 7. “South Park: The Stick of Truth” • 8. “Thief” • 9. “Banished” • 10. “Earth Defense Force 2025.”