Tolstoy's Anna Karenina has been revamped by director Joe Wright, and the result is incredibly intoxicating. Starring Hollywoods favorite period piece leading lady, Keira Knightly as Anna Karenina, Jude Law as her husband, and Aaron Taylor-Johnson as Vronsky, this movie is guaranteed to intrigue.
The cinematography was breathtaking. From the very first scene of the movie, the audience is pleasantly surprised by the excellent set which is constantly changing as if the movie took place on the stage. You go from one beautiful scene to the next with expert choreography. The actors move as if they are in an dance of some sort. It is both interesting and breathtaking in some scenes. Some may feel that this is distracting from the story, but I found it remarkably well done.
Now, the acting was also impeccable. Keira Knightly was a divine treat. She was able to convey her hesitation to fall for Vronsky, her love and passion for him, and her smothering feelings of misery with expert modesty. Her face can depict each emotion with such subtlety that the audience is left captivated.
Jude Law is also a treat. His muted personality and display of restraint in the face of betrayal is unnerving. He is wonderful and really captures the essence of that character. He really is a saint.
Now, Aaron Taylor-Johnson is adorable, yes, but he is not Vronsky. The only case of miscasting in this movie. Not only was it the ridiculous mustache but the very way he carried himself throughout the movie. It was painfully apparent that he was trying way too hard to be this character. We can kind of let this slide by, because of the superb acting of the rest of the cast.
Kelly MacDonald was lovely and had some of the best lines. Matthew MacFadyen was ridiculous in an excellent way! Emily Watson was a delight as well as a few surprise Downton Abbey appearances. Hello Mary Crawley!
It must also be noted that the parallel love story of Constantine Levi, played by Domhnall Gleeson (Harry Potter) and his pure love for Kitty is a breath of fresh air.
If you have an adult attention span and an appreciation for classic literature and stupendous acting, then you will love this movie. It is a treat to the mind and the eye. Check it out in select theaters now, or wait until it is released on DVD. Either way, it is a must see!