Anna Karenina

( 5 )

Overview

Director Joe Wright reteams with Keira Knightley for this version of Anna Karenina, which boasts a script by Tom Stoppard. Knightley stars as the title character, a Russian woman who cheats on her respected husband Jude Law with a young soldier Aaron Johnson and suffers greatly for her betrayal. Wright sets the action in a theater, often segueing from scene to scene by utilizing different spaces within the same set. Anna Karenina screened at the 2012 Toronto International Film ...
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Note: Anna Karenina was nominated for Best Achievement in Cinematography, Best Achievement in Costume Design, Best Music - Original Score, and Best Achievement in Production Design
Academy Awards® and Oscar® are marks owned by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

Overview

Director Joe Wright reteams with Keira Knightley for this version of Anna Karenina, which boasts a script by Tom Stoppard. Knightley stars as the title character, a Russian woman who cheats on her respected husband Jude Law with a young soldier Aaron Johnson and suffers greatly for her betrayal. Wright sets the action in a theater, often segueing from scene to scene by utilizing different spaces within the same set. Anna Karenina screened at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival.
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Special Features

Anna Karenina: an epic story about love; Adapting Tolstoy; Keira as Anna; On set with director Joe Wright; Dressing Anna; Anna Karenina: time-lapse photography; Feature commentary with director Joe Wright; Deleted scenes
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Perry Seibert
Classic stories can be told and retold, but Leo Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, considered by some the greatest novel ever written, has had more than its fair share of movie adaptations. Director Joe Wright distinguishes his particular version thanks to some jazzy showmanship, and an excellent script from award-winning playwright Tom Stoppard. Distilling a book of more than a thousand pages into a 130-minute movie requires a particular skill set that few filmmakers possess, but Stoppard deftly introduces us to Anna Keira Knightley, the wife of the politically powerful Karenin Jude Law as she gets a letter from her brother Oblonsky Matthew Macfadyen begging her to come visit him in Moscow in order to help him patch up his relationship with his wife Dolly Kelly Macdonald, who has grown increasingly weary due to her husband's affairs. On the train there, she strikes up a conversation with Countess Vronsky Olivia Williams, and the two are met at the station by Vronsky's soldier son Aaron Taylor-Johnson, who immediately becomes drawn to Anna -- and her to him. So begins a star-crossed relationship that will forever alter the destiny of numerous people. There are lots of narrative building blocks that need to be laid before this story can move, and the most intriguing aspect of the movie is that while Stoppard's straightforward approach to the story provides a solid foundation, Wright dazzles us visually during the lengthy set-up of so many characters and relationships. The director seems to be filming the entire movie in a single theater space with his camera roving ceaselessly across the stage, down into the orchestra pit, and even high up into the rafters. The unexpected visual segues, and the unmoored camera recall Baz Luhrmann's approach to spectacle in Moulin Rouge, and the rather bold creative choice pays off in spades. As elaborately constructed as the opening half hour of the film is, we still easily grasp the story that's being framed without ever growing restless or overwhelmed. Once all the players are established, and we get a ballroom party scene even more technically complex and emotionally rewarding than a similar scene in Wright's first-rate feature-film debut, Pride and Prejudice, the director eases up on the theatricality and lets the actors carry the growing emotional weight of the material. Knightley is solid at the center of it all playing a woman who yearns for passion even as she sees what it will do to her family, Jude Law does superb work as the wronged husband who still loves his wife even as she humiliates him, Kelly Macdonald brings moral heft to the film with some quietly forceful words about consequences, and Macfadyen gets all of the funny lines and serves up numerous moments of welcome comic relief -- he'll make you smile just with his jaunty walk. While these unconventional visuals will draw ire from purists, it's hard to deny that Wright sticks to it for just the right amount of time for the process to serve his purpose. Once he's set up all the pieces, the story plays out in handsome period detail. Those who want a top-notch Masterpiece Theater-like production of this classic will be enthralled by the back half of the movie, where the fatalistic certainty of Anna's comeuppance is a guarantee even while we wonder about its fairness. It's hard to argue that tackling this story again was necessary, and this version can't be called definitive or revelatory. However, Wright has done an admirable job of investing this tale that's more than a century old with a modern sensibility that augments rather than sacrifices the original setting. He's made a movie that's easy to admire and respect.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/19/2013
  • UPC: 025192157301
  • Original Release: 2012
  • Rating:

  • Source: Focus Features
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound
  • Language: English
  • Time: 2:10:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 927

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Keira Knightley Anna Karenina
Jude Law Aleksei Karenin, Karenin
Aaron Taylor-Johnson Count Vronsky
Matthew MacFadyen Oblonsky
Domhnall Gleeson Levin
Alicia Vikander Kitty
Kelly MacDonald Dolly
Ruth Wilson Princess Betsy Tverskoy
Olivia Williams Countess Vronsky
Emily Watson Countess Lydia Ivanovna
Eric MacLennan Matvey
Theo Morrissey Grisha Oblonsky
Cecily Morrissey Lili Oblonsky
Freya Galpin Masha Oblonsky
Octavia Morrissey Tanya Oblonsky
Beatrice Morrissey Vasya Oblonsky
Marine Battier Mlle. Roland
Guro Nagelhus Schia Annushka
Aruhan Galieva Aruhan
Carl Grose Korney
Bryan Hands Mikhail Slyudin
Oskar McNamara Serozha
Luke Newberry Vasily Lukich
Michael Shaeffer Doorkeeper
Steven Beard Elderly Waiter
Pip Torrens Prince Shcherbatsky
Susanne Lothar Princess Shcherbatsky
Alexandra Roach Countess Nordston
Henry Lloyd-Hughes Burisov
Aaron Taylor-Johnson Vronsky
David Wilmot Nikolai
Tannishtha Chatterjee Masha
Joseph Macnab Guards Officer
Nick Holder Stationmaster
Claire Greenway Austrian Princess
Mike Shepherd Wheel Tapper
Arthur Nightingale Oblonsky's Servant
Buffy Davis Agafia
Gala Wesson Kitchen Maid
Eros Vlahos Boris
Kyle Soller Korsunsky
Sam Cox Kapitonich
Max Bennett Petritsky
Holliday Grainger Baroness
Jude Monk McGowan Tuskevitch
Antony Byrne Colonel
Michelle Dockery Princess Myagkaya
Emerald Fennell Princess Merkalova
Sarine Sofair Anna's Friend
Thomas Howes Yashvin
Raphaël Personnaz Alexander Vronsky
Bill Skarsgård Makhotin
Cara Delevingne Princess Sorokina
Bodil Blain Princess Sorokina Senior
Hera Hilmar Varya
Kenneth Collard Prince Tverskoy
Steve Evets Theodore
Conor McCarry Young Peasant
Giles King Stremov
Martin Wimbush Anna's Doctor
James Northcote Princess Betsy's Footman
Duncan Wisbey Shopkeeper
Jamie Beamish Opera House Husband
Shirley Henderson Opera House Wife
Simon Muller Opera House Manager
Nikolai Lester Piano Prodigy
Tillie-Bett Grant Baby Anya
Technical Credits
Joe Wright Director
Tim Bevan Producer
Thomas Brown Art Director
Paul Carter Sound/Sound Designer
Liza Chasin Executive Producer
Dixie Chassay Casting
Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui Choreography
Carolyn Cousins Makeup
Jacqueline Durran Costumes/Costume Designer
Karen Folly Edwards Makeup
Eric Fellner Producer
Alexandra Ferguson Co-producer
Nick Gottschalk Art Director
Christine Greenwood Makeup
Sarah Greenwood Production Designer
Martin Harrison Asst. Director
Debra Hayward Executive Producer
Mark Holt Special Effects Supervisor
Jina Jay Casting
Dario Marianelli Score Composer, Musical Arrangement
Seamus Mcgarvey Cinematographer
Melanie Ann Oliver Editor
Ivana Primorac Makeup
Peter J. Robertson Camera Operator
Tom Still Art Director
Tom Stoppard Screenwriter
Paul Webster Producer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Anna Karenina
1. Scene 1 [5:36]
2. Scene 2 [6:05]
3. Scene 3 [8:16]
4. Scene 4 [5:27]
5. Scene 5 [7:13]
6. Scene 6 [7:10]
7. Scene 7 [7:06]
8. Scene 8 [7:00]
9. Scene 9 [6:35]
10. Scene 10 [6:36]
11. Scene 11 [7:38]
12. Scene 12 [7:37]
13. Scene 13 [4:29]
14. Scene 14 [4:48]
15. Scene 15 [4:23]
16. Scene 16 [6:29]
17. Scene 17 [5:14]
18. Scene 18 [7:06]
19. Scene 19 [6:40]
20. Scene 20 [7:53]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Anna Karenina
   Play
   Scenes
   Bonus
      Deleted Scenes
         Play All
         Oblonsky Begs Dolly to "Think of the Children"
         Levin at the Bath House with Serafina
         The Mazurka
         Cleopatra Dancers/Makhotin Teases Vronsky about Anna
         The Clown
         Levin Has Wedding Nerves/Kitty Tells Levin She Does Not Love Him
         Karenin is Visited by the Shopkeeper and Lydia
         Anna in the Hotel at Night (Before the Station)
      Anna Karenina: An Epic Story about Love
      Adapting Tolstoy
      Keira as Anna
      On Set with Director Joe Wright
      Dressing Anna
      Anna Karenina: Time-Lapse Photography
      Feature Commentary with Director Joe Wright
         Commentary: On
         Commentary: Off
   Setup
      Spoken Language
         English 5.1
         Español 5.1
         Feature Commentary with Director Joe Wright
      Subtitles
         English SDH
         Español
         Français
         Subtitles: Off
   Previews
      Pride & Prejudice
      Atonement
      Jane Eyre
      Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
      The Debt
      The Eagle
      Elizabeth
      One Day
      Play All
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 5 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(3)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(1)

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2013

    Very beautifully done! I loved all the cast and thought they al

    Very beautifully done! I loved all the cast and thought they all did a splendid job although I thought Keira could have done better but I still love her! I particularly loved the new idea of the director using the stage as his background and thought it really worked well. It was definitely something different from all the other "Anna Karenina" movies and just for that I would give it two thumbs up. Although for me Oblonsky stole the show mostly because Matthew did such a fantastic job of portraying this complete and sweet (at times) character. It was definitely worth seeing and I do feel sorry for those people who didn't really like this production or didn't feel comfortable with the stage idea. Also, the costumes were breathtakingly beautiful and the designer did just pick up an Oscar for her maticulous and magnificent work!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 13, 2013

    I hesitated to watch this movie - which I rented first - becaus

    I hesitated to watch this movie - which I rented first - because I thought nothing new could be added to a story so well known and because I do not particularly like Keira Knightley (still believe a more mature actress and possibly less waify could have done a more credible job). Still: it is a rather hipnotic movie and I am going to buy it.
    The music is haunting, the costumes a feast to the eyes, the cast fantastic, including Karenin, whom is portraied often as an old bore, but who is only a man with his principles but who deeply loves his wife. To see Ruth Wilson on screen was a joy, I adore her since her Jane Eyre, which I consider the best version ever!. Same for Michelle/Lady Mary! And Aaron Taylor, after a first rather underimpressing appearance, becomes sexier by the minute. The waltz at the ball was incredible, I want to learn to dance like that. Bottom line: absolutely brilliant movie.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2013

    Perfect film !!!

    Perfect film !!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 4, 2013

    beautiful 

    beautiful 

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2013

    Very disappointed. With a cast like this, I expected this to be

    Very disappointed. With a cast like this, I expected this to be a real classic, but there was a weird, circus-like quality to this production that I found very distracting. I couldn't watch the whole thing.Wish I'd spent the money on "Argo" instead.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews