Holes (PG, 2003)
It's "Lord of the Flies" meets "The Shawshank Redemption" in this lively Disney adaptation of Louis Sachar's Newbery Award-winning, time-layered novel. Unjustly accused of stealing shoes, Stanley Yelnats IV (Shia LaBeouf) is sentenced to serve 18 months at Camp Greenlake, a character-building "camp" for juvenile delinquents. The exercises are limited to digging holes in a dry lake bed to satisfy the camp warden's personal agenda. The adults at the camp are harsh, erratic and unreliable, forcing the boys to rely on themselves -- and eventually on each other. Their cooperation fosters respect for each other and more mature attitudes. Stanley befriends "Zero" (Khleo Thomas) a small kid sent to the camp for being homeless. Zero helps Stanley dig holes, and Stanley teaches Zero to read. But their connection is much deeper than either one knows.
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