To begin with, I'd say Ameris tried to compress the book in just about an hour and something.The result was too many parts of the book, necessary to the plot, to be left out so it is difficult for the viewer to attached to the characters.
Demoustier is very earthly beautiful girl and yes she's great as Pauline. But none of her outbreaks in the book was filmed in the movie, neither her lingering character between love and hate.
Arlaud was just boring at his acting and nothing reminded him to me from the book.Totally uninterested. Basler as Mme Chanteu is perhaps the only character from the book so close to the text. Excellent acting, but Balmer was just a shadow in the movie. Veronique, a very strong role in the book, was totally absent from the movie, not even the ending included her.
To sum up, it was a good effort, but the book is much much better and in-tensed. Don't do both, either watch the movie or read the book (I'd prefer the second choice). But the movie from itself is another boring story irrelevant to the magic quill of Emil Zola.
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