Anna Karenina

Book vs. Movie

Anna Karenina (book)    Anna Karenina (movie)

Although Tolstoy’s book is considered a classic, I was a little disappointed in the novel.  I really thought it could be better—and edited at that.  Maybe 800 pages was more than enough for what the author was trying to get at.   Is it harsh to say that the characters seemed too dramatic and even pathetic?  Kind of like a Russian soap opera.  It was a bit torturous to read this brick, even though there were moments that I liked.  In reality, the story is not even focused on Anna Karenina and her affair with Count Vronsky.  The bulk of the plot deals with the farmer Levin and his worldview.  That being said, I can’t believe I will admit it but the movie was much more entertaining than the book and it was to the point.  I was actually surprised that two hours on a DVD could fit all the main ideas of the novel into it!  The film actually revolves around Anna Karenina’s ruin in society.  I also loved the way it was made—as if watching a play (with sets from the theatre and back stage scenes).  I have to agree that the adaptation was cleverly done.  As for how the onscreen version follows the book, there are only slight deviations but most major parts from the novel are quite accurate.  If you haven’t read the book, save yourself the trouble and just watch the movie instead.  What do you say?  Would you agree with me?  I’d like to hear the opinions of those who thoroughly enjoyed the story.

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2 Responses to Anna Karenina

  1. Jessica says:

    The movie is great, but the book is fabulous too. While it is true that the novel has its lulls, it is impressive in terms of its depiction of women, marriage, and childbirth.

    • Melissa says:

      Hello, Jessica!
      The depiction of women, marriage and childbirth is interesting in this story but of course, it was written in the time that these views were perceived as normal. That is perhaps the crazy thing about it. This book would not even be a novel if it took place in this day and age. Even looking at the adultery that Anna Karenina commits, compared to her brother: for him, it was more acceptable because he is a man, but for a woman (in that day and age) it was utter disgrace. Shows how much society has changed—with regards to these three topics. A lot of people have told me that the book is too descriptive and philosophical. I think I just found what Anna Karenina did in the end, quite pathetic. Thanks for your input, Jess!

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