There are a few weak spots in this movie - very few - that get soft and sentimental to excess. The family problems - a 14 year old boy largely estranged from his father - is banal and has been told many times. But once we get into the real meat of this movie, the transformation of a spoiled kid into a young man through acts of real devotion and courage, this film becomes not just very good but extraordinary. The young boy, who is not cute or in any way cinematographic but just, in appearance, a normal kid, is also a first-rate actor.
The crossing of the North Sea - I won't explain that here, because I don't want to spoil anything - had me riveted to the screen, but so much of the return trip is just astounding.
The aerial photography is also worth far more than the price of admission.
Go see this movie. If you know a 14 year old kid, be sure to take him with you. If you were ever a 14 year old kid, be sure to let him out so he can experience this movie as well. Take a few handkerchieves as well. Even if you're a manly man, the 14 year old kid inside you may get the better of you - and make you better in the process.
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