|Summary: In a seemingly perfect community, without war, pain, suffering, differences or choice, a young boy is chosen to learn from an elderly man about the true pain and pleasure of the “real” world.
Director: Phillip Noyce
Starring: Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep, Brenton Thwaites, Alexander Skarsgård, Katie Holmes, Odeya Rush, Cameron Monaghan, Taylor Swift, Emma Tremblay
PLOT – SPOILER WARNING:
In the year 2048, after a war, the community has decided to get rid of different races and feelings. All the citizens have had their memories erased; except for the Receiver of Memory. As the Receiver of Memory is the only individual in the community who has the memories from before, he must advise the Chief Elder, and the other Elders, on the decisions for the community. Jonas is to become the next Receiver of Memory, and progressively receive memories, from the past receiver, The Giver. Jonas learns of the Giver’s past and of his child, Rosemary. She preceded Jonas as Receiver of Memory, and was so distraught from the memories that she committed suicide, by what the Community call releasing. They regard its nature as mysterious; the audience learn that it is death by lethal injection. Jonas begins to teach his findings to his friend Fiona, who he decides to share the idea of feelings with. Fiona is unsure of how she feels about feelings, but they kiss while together privately.
Jonas also shares his memories with the baby his father brought home to their house, Gabe, and develops a close relationship with him after discovering he shares the same mark on his wrist Jonas does, the mark of a potential Receiver of Memory. Jonas decides that everyone should have the memories of the past and eventually, the Giver and Jonas decide that the only way they can help the community is to go past the border of what they call Elsewhere, beyond the community, therefore releasing the memories back into the community. Jonas sneaks out at curfew, and decides to get Gabe at the Nurturing Center, who is to be released of weakness. Asher, his other longtime friend besides Fiona, tries to stop him before he leaves the neighborhood, but Jonas quickly punches him. Asher lies on the ground, stunned, and Jonas rides his bike to the Nurturing Center. He tells Fiona his plan and wants to take her with him, but she refuses and instead helps him retrieve Gabe. Before he leaves, she kisses him and helps him escape.
Meanwhile Jonas’s mother and Asher, go to the Chief Elder to tell them Jonas is missing. Guards are sent to contain Jonas, who they say has become “dangerous”, but Jonas gets one of their motorcycles and drives off the cliff near the Giver’s dwelling into “The Elsewhere”. Asher is assigned, by the Chief Elder, to use a drone to find Jonas and “lose” him but when Asher finds Jonas stumbling through the woods, he captures him with the drone. After Jonas implores Asher to think that if he ever cared for Jonas to let him go, Asher drops him into a river, setting him free. Jonas stumbles through the land of Elsewhere, while Fiona has been condemned to be “released” for helping him. Just as she is about to be released by Jonas’s father, the Giver steps in and stalls the Chief Elder with memories of his daughter, Rosemary, trying to call out the Chief Elder, in which she succeeded. Eventually, Jonas finds a sled like one he rode in a memory from the Giver and makes his way beyond the border of Elsewhere, releasing memories and color back into the community and saving Fiona because Jonas’s father realizes what he was really doing. Jonas and Gabe return to the house of his memories, where people are singing Christmas carols, and his voiceover says that back in the community, he swears he hears music too, or maybe just an echo.