I admit it. I like movies about the indomitable spirit of those unjustly imprisoned, and I like them even more if they are in any way connected to WWII. I hear portions of my grandfather's last letter to his family, written just hours before his execution. I hear my uncle's stories of life in a Nazi labor camp and see again the twinkle in his eye as he recounts the little ways one maintains freedom, dignity and charity despite everything which would incline one towards hate and despair. It's an imitation of the passion, death, aaand resurrection, as well as further proof that imitation of Christ is a beautiful thing despite appearances to the contrary. Every cross has some share in The Cross, and God never forsakes us. This is what gives us hope despite real cause to lose it, and it's what makes "I am David" more than a good story beautifully crafted. It's the story of man's fallen, broken and restless heart remade, which is why it's perfect for Christmastime viewing...though it would be even more suited to Lent and Easter!
The story takes place in the 1950's in communist eastern Europe. David is a 12 year old boy who has been separated from his parents and imprisoned for almost as long as he can remember. The movie chronicles his escape and the wanderings which eventually lead him home. What is not overtly depicted but nevertheless unmistakable is God's providential care in even the details of our lives and the varied surprising means He uses to bring greater good out of evil. David reminds us to never give up, to recognize God working in our lives, and to grow in love and trust along the way.
Some of the prison scenes are intense and depict a level of evil too disturbing for younger children. Watch this one first and then decide who can join you.