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 ... See full summary »
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
Uniformly excellent cast and competent handling of scenes and interactions, with both humour and drama. However, a faithful rendering gives three hours plus of sticking fairly closely to the book, so much of the film lacks tension: depressed looking actors having depressing conversations in depressing dingy rooms, which all look rather similar. Apparently realistic settings and social issues tend to reduce themselves to a claustrophobic bubble, with little obvious connection to the real world. Even the external shots don't bring much relief and there is no score to lift the mood. The familiar plot doesn't deliver many surprises, with plot development achieved through dialogue rather than action, with of course notable exceptions. The tremendous acting and overall drama of the plot carry the film, but don't expect to be on the edge of your seat and the length is something to bear in mind.
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