Living in squalor, a former student and loner (Raskolnikov) murders an old pawnbroker woman in order to confirm his hypothesis that certain individuals can pretermit morality in the pursuit of something greater.
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 »
Set in present day Japan in a provincial town, Bunzo Kurosawa, a greedy and violent father, is murdered in his own home. Bunzo has 3 sons: oldest son Mitsuru (Takumi Saito), second son Isao... See full summary »
A crime causes much grief and guilt for the young idealist Rodya Raskonlnikov (Dempsey) who cannot come around to confess his offense.
Beginning with the positives, Crime and Punishment has a fairly powerful cast with the exception of Patrick Dempsey. Julie Delpy plays an excellent Sonia, and Ben Kingsley could not have done a better Porfiry. The cast were great for their parts, unfortunately the actual movie wasn't too great in terms of quality film-making.
Without knowing any prior history to the movie (or the book for that matter), one can easily see that this was made for TV. The cheesy "spacing out" effects only used in TV are an abundance in Crime and Punishment. It is most noticeable in Rodya's moments of despair and depression. The overall impression of this version of Crime and Punishment is much more different than what I saw in my mind while reading the book. The words in the novel are dark, gritty, and full of heart. The movie is very simple and it's almost always in broad daylight! If anything, all scenes should be shot in nighttime 99% of the time since darkness relatively symbolizes desperation and grim moments.
Patrick Dempsey, as much of a sweetheart as he is, is NOT Rodya Raskolnikov. Rodya is a rough man, not a pansy. This was a complete casting error that ruined his character's complexity entirely.
For what it's worth, Crime and Punishment makes for a decent straight-to-television movie. If one is looking for justice to the book, let your imagination run wild. After all, an imagination is a much more powerful tool than a cheesy television film. Too much was changed in the transition from the book to the little screen. That was the crime. Watching this as a faithful Dostoyevski fan was the punishment.
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