Sunday, November 25, 2012

‘The Trial’ & More Top Film Adaptations of Literary Classics

Nov 24, 2012  - The Daily Beast - Jimmy So

Joe Wright’s new adaptation of Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina may be a failure, but other auteurs have succeeded in bringing literary gems to life on the screen. From Pasolini’s Canterbury Tales to Olivier’s Henry V, you can watch the videos

Joe Wright is either bookish to a fault or the best literary agent working today, representing such “new” voices as Leo Tolstoy and “YA sensation” Jane Austen. He is the most determined refuter of the claim that film and literature don’t mix. I first caught whiff of his cultural leanings in Ms. Austen’s Pride and Prejudice (2005), when I saw Donald Sutherland amusing himself as Mr. Bennet. Then Wright further shored up his literary credentials by locking into place Ian McEwan’s Atonement (2007), with Vanessa Redgrave showing perfectly how Briony Tallis is and never will be “just a dim old biddy in a chair.” To anyone paralyzed by the thought of a movie director who reads, Wright now has taken on the mother of all novels, good old Leo’s Anna Karenina, with such a filmable scene as this:

More including video clips from the various movies. at The Daily Beast

Jimmy So is deputy books editor at Newsweek/The Daily Beast. Follow him on Twitter @jimmyso.

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