John Simm (LIFE ON MARS) stars as antihero Raskolnikov in this 2002 BBC adaptation of Dostoyevskys classic novel.
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I'm actually a big Canon group fan since 80's and love director MenahemGolan's works. Some people claim he's a bad movie director, well, evenif so, some of his bad movies are several times better than a lot offilms made in our days. And with this one he simply outdid himself. Atleast he managed to play a very significant role in 80's. Not only hedirected such great movies as 'Over the Top', 'Enter the ninja','Mivtsa Yonatan', but also produced some great action movies includingthe legendary 'Death Wish' and 'Cobra'. This movie is truly unique. Firstly the atmosphere. Although it cameout in 2002, they had started shooting it in 1993. And that's one partof the special appeal in this movie. Golan masterfully used thispost-Soviet era to create a modern day adaptation of this great noveland all the non-Russian actors perfectly fit in with this atmosphere.In general I will say that the movie is fast-paced, rich in content andvery nicely edited. All the actors simply shined in this movie playing Russians. Frankly, Ihad never been interested in Crispin Glover's career and only after'Crime and punishment' decided to check out his other movies. He doesan outstanding job showing the mental condition of a criminal bothbefore and after committing a murder. Talking about the murder, thescene of slaughtering the old woman was very realistic, violent andgory. Despite of all that, we still feel sorry for him after that veryscene and that's actually the point of the novel - pitying a criminal. As for John Hurt, before watching the movie I had read another reviewhere saying his acting was bad, which I really don't understand why. Ipersonally find he was terrific and delivered many memorable lines. There's a scene where Vanessa Redgrave lies down on the floor besidehis son's bed, then stretches out her hand saying 'Good-bye' toRodion's friend. That particular scene is very Russian. It may seemridiculous to some people (and I'm sure it has), but it's actuallyanother subtle sequence. It seems the actors did understand what itfeels like being Russian at the moment. They really did a very nicecasting on this movie because as I said all the actors perfectly fitin. There was a young actress very much like Jodie Foster - Sophie Wardplaying Rodion's sister. Not to forget Richard Lynch who despite ofplaying a negative role, still managed to induce sympathy, because evenif in the first half of the movie they turn out to be sworn enemieswith Rodion, later in the court sequence he seems to have compassionupon Rodion. All in all, this was one of those movies that when you watch it, youdon't think about who's the director, or who the actors are. The plotis so thrilling that you just want to see what's going to happen next,since Menahem Golan manages to give every event a natural outcome. There was the cute Israeli actress Avital Dicker (a girl of marvelousbeauty) playing a hooker with whom Rodion later falls in love. Also I would like to point out the great score by Robert O. Ragland. Overall, this movie is much more than just worth seeing. Hopefully theywill release a proper DVD release of this someday with some interviewsand director's commentary. One of Menahem Golan's best movies.
For quick characterization, I first like to know which country a movieis from. In this case, I was unsure.. stars: the usual anglo set(though I only knew Vanessa Redgrave). Director/producer/productioncompany: Israel. I had bought the film for 1â¬, and had it shelved foralmost a year, until I decided to give it a try last night.And I was surprised to see it was a very Russian movie. Filmed onlocation in Moscow, or in Ostankino studios. Lots of Russian names inthe credits, apart from the stars. Based on Dostoyevski's 1866 novel(which has been turned to film more than a dozen times), but enacted in2000's Moscow.And the outdoor scenes showed quite some of Moscow as I knew it from mytrip there in 1988. The indoors scenes showed shabby apartments, asseen e.g. in Nochnoy dozor. In brief: visually I felt much at home inthis.Not having read the original novel, I can't judge how truthful it wasrendered. Some of the acted emotions felt indeed 19th century to me,but then there were updates including Nietzsche, Hitler, and Stalin.So, much food for thought..I agree that some of the acting was melodramatic (call it soap opera ifyou wish), but the disturbed Raskolnikov as well as the detective/judgeProfiry (John Hurt) were interesting to watch over the full 2 hours.I watched the pic again this morning (after some Wikipedia reading),and must say I liked it better the second time around. It's still anodd film, but now I really like it, and can recommend it to otherlovers of film diversity :^)
So, firstly, I must say that I read the book a week ago and I stillhave a fresh memory of it. Today I watched this movie, and I would saythat you better have to read the book first, so that the movie don'tspoil it, in case you read it. And you really should to.The idea behind the movie is really great, and unfortunately, it failsto pass the full meaning very well. However, you should keep in mindthat it is a movie, and the book wasn't made for being one. Thathappens because of the great emotional presentation and the uniquecharacter and thoughts each person has in the book.So, watching this movie, you lose a part of Dostoevsky's masterpiece.What is more, many details are missing that really give life and makingthe novel feel real. There are a few differences with the book as well,insignificant however."So must I assume this movie is garbage?" Of course not. The actors aregreat in the majority of cases, and the plot is very solid and goodenough conveyed. Nothing great at effects or music (not more than 5soundtracks, think so). But it's a decent visual representation of theepic novel. Read it and watch the movie as I said, you won't regret it.PS: Keep in mind that they can be both depressing enough, but Very Goodat their class (especially the novel).
each adaptation is occasion for present personal style. the dose isessential. in this case, basic sin are innovations. Nietzsche andStalin, Russia after 1991 and crumbs of Hitler/CeauÈescu speech, astory without borders or soul, great actors in not inspired roles. onlyvirtue - the measure of fragility for novel. Dostoyevski is not rubbertoy. and the ambition of director/scriptwriter to do a personal versionis a big error. because his Crime and Punishment is almost fake. theconfession of Raskolnikov - a profound injury against novel. therelations between characters - chain of mistakes. only excuse - thegood intentions. but to use a really good cast for a poor drawing isexpression only for a great blind ambition. desire to say a classicstory in yours manner, with yours mark, with selfish attitude is amistake out of words.
I watched about 20 minutes of the movie and was so stunned that i hadto turn my computer on, and hoping to find out this is some kind ofparody, or at least to see this was this director's first and lastmovie. Now finding out that he made more than 100 movies I really don'tunderstand how this came to be such a bad movie. I didn't expect that a movie could be as good as that great novel, butthis is just the opposite. It's like watching a episode of soap-opera,there is no real characterization, lines are so straight forward anddumb, and such a great cast of actors looks like a local amateur group.As i'am writing this, great John Hurt is on the screen playinginspector, and it still looks awful.Definitely one the worst movies I've ever seen.
As a fan and recent reader of the book, I was intrigued to see thatthis film was coming on TV. I literally could not get through 15minutes of this god-awful movie without turning it off. I made anaccount on IMDb seconds ago specifically so that I could post a reviewabout what a horrific mistake of a film this is. The plot is scrambledand rushed, bearing no resemblance to the actual novel, which I may addis a masterpiece of Russian literature. The acting is flat and stale,and the character development is virtually nonexistent. The minimalcharacter development that does occur, however, is completelyincongruous with anything that happens in the novel. Though the book isnot particularly long, Dostoevsky manages to develop his charactersfully and consistently, a concept which was obviously lost on the groupof miscreants who made this "movie". The entire concept of setting thisstory in the present day is absolutely ludicrous to begin with, but theexecution of that misguided idea is so hamfisted that it's nearlypainful to watch. This would have been a disappointing film on its own,but the fact that it has been produced under the name "Crime andPunishment", a story which is in no way relevant to this piece ofgarbage, is a serious crime in itself.
Appalling.Within minutes of the film's onset, the ideas of Raskolnikov'spublished paper are attributed to Nazis and consequently to Nietzsche.Anathema.Crime and Punishment was published by Dostoyevsky in 1866. Nietzschewrote Also Sprach Zarathustra *after* 1882. Nietzsche's last writtenwork before dementia took hold was published 1888. Nietzsche died 1900.Nietzsche's sister published Will To Power in 1901. The NationalSocialist Party (the Nazis) formed in 1920.Golan's "liberty" with the reality of Nietzschean philosophy onlyserves to reinforce insidious disinformation. Contrary to theinsinuations of Golan's script, Nietzsche was *not* a Nazi; Nietzschedetested both the state and the notion of racial supremacy. Anyone whobothers to read his works knows this. Unfortunately precious few peopleever bother to even lift a cover, relying instead on the sewagepublished by people like Golan, who obviously has also not bothered toeven glance at Nietzsche's work.This _movie_ is an insult to both Dostoyevsky and Nietzsche, never mindits myriad other affronts to the art of film, in general.Attributing Raskolnikov's behavior to Nietzsche or Nietzscheanphilosophy is unforgivable. Not only was the writer of Crime andPunishment from a different generation (Dostoyevsky b. 1821; Nietzscheb.1844), there was *nothing* German about the ideology Raskolnikov hadpublished in his paper. "Deutschland Ã¼ber alles," at the time Crime andPunishment was published, was known as an appeal to the various Germanmonarchs to give the creation of a united Germany a higher prioritythan the independence of their small states, not a call to a race of"super" men.Did Golan actually *read* the book written by Dostoyevksy? My moneysays he read 3/4 of the Cliff Notes for Crime and Punishment, and usedcultural "knowledge" he found in various chatrooms and forums ondial-up BBS and the internet to inform his screenplay.This film is like the bad dream of a university sophomore in 1998, whonodded off despite ingesting a full bottle of No-Doz, as he was tryingto write the final paper for Russian Lit (went to class, but read noneof the books), the day after he learned he got a D- for his final gradein Survey of Existential Philosophers. Also made a D in history, 20thCentury Europe Before the Cold War.If you have read Crime and Punishment and enjoyed it, do *not* watchthis if you seek to heighten/enrich that experience. If you aresupposed to read Crime and Punishment, but think you can watch thisfilm and get what you need, you are headed for an epic fail.If you're into msting, however, there may be some value to viewingthis.Aside from numerous fails with time period inconsistencies that onlymake sense in the context of a bad dream (note: not a nightmare, justsome crappy, disconnected dream): wardrobe *sucks* and contributesmassively to the overall unbelievability of the world this scriptcreated; the makeup is... more-often-than-not very obviously make-up,poorly applied; everyone delivers their lines thoroughly stilted,unconvincing in the extreme. Props and set design are exactly as onemight have in a bad dream, especially if, in real life, one has workedstock at a big box store, Walmart, or Best Buy.What an awful waste of celluloid. I wish Mystery Science Theater 3000was still making new episodes on TV, and that either Joel and the 'botsor Mike and the 'bots could give this thing the roasting it deserves.