There have been many adaptations of the weighty classic. To be honest, the book itself isn’t very screen friendly. The plot is simple enough but it has so many complex layers. I don’t think anyone would really read the book itself unless they had to for their A-Levels or they wanted to just to sound intelligent. My reason for reading it was the latter.
Anna Karenina is the story of Anna Karenina (surprise, surprise) who falls for army officer, Vronsky. This passionate affair ultimately leads to her downfall.
And now I must just say…
I didn’t like the film.
Yes, it had good cinematography, a strong casting and good costumes. The idea of setting it within a play was done well enough. My main gripe is that I just didn’t ‘feel’ the romance between Vronsky and Anna. I don’t think that Vronsky’s character was very well developed emotionally or characteristically and yet still managed to fill the scene because he was a central character.
The director, Joe Wright, has worked with Keira Knightley before on Pride and Prejudice and Atonement. I don’t think its a poor script (but it certainly has its faults) but there are only so many dramatic stares you can do before it gets tiresome. The book itself is just quite difficult to proficiently adapt into a movie.
MY RATING: ** / *****