Raskolnikov, an impoverished ex-law student, kills an old pawnbroker and her sister, perhaps for money, perhaps to prove a theory about being above the law. He comes to police attention ...
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Raskolnikov, an impoverished ex-law student, kills an old pawnbroker and her sister, perhaps for money, perhaps to prove a theory about being above the law. He comes to police attention through normal procedures (he was the victim's client), but his outbursts make him the prime suspect of the clever Porfiry. Meanwhile, life swirls around Raskolnikov: his mother and sister come to the city followed by two older men seeking his sister's hand; he meets a drunken clerk who is then killed in a traffic accident, and he falls in love with the man's daughter, Sonia, a young prostitute. She urges him to confess, promising to follow him to Siberia. Will he accept responsibility? Written by
If you find a better adaptation of this classic, let me know.
I recently read the novel for the first time and loved it. But I really wanted to hear the characters speak in Russian and not in the faint British accent I imagined reading my English edition. I don't speak or read Russian, so a film with subtitles was my only option. Having no experience with Soviet-era cinema, and as a child of the Cold War, I'll admit I went into the viewing with far too many suspicions of this "state sponsored" adaptation. I was pleasantly surprised by the obvious respect with which the story was treated.
The film perfectly captured almost every nuance of the novel, such as Rodya's claustrophobic physical and mental existence as well as the bleakness of St. Petersburg's slums. The characters were all faithfully portrayed, except maybe for Svidrigailov. He seemed to be portrayed more sympathetically than I think Dostoevsky would have intended. While he certainly was a tragic figure, I didn't read him as being quite as gallant as he appeared in the film.
My only other gripe is one I've read on here somewhere else. There is no hint of the redemption Raskolnikov experiences which is so essential to the whole story. But don't let this, or any of the other comments on IMDb about the film's pace or length deter you from watching it. Anyone who loves the novel and yearns to hear the story told in its native tongue will find the experience a rewarding one.
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