Anna, Lizzie and the watermelon

Introducing, my first-ever movie review.

Bah, it is more of a comparison.

You see, just yesterday, I saw Joe Wright’s adaptation of Anna Karenina.
You see, I see, I saw and I didn’t like.

First you must know that I have not read Anna Karenina… yet, [but in due time, I will. And by “due time”, I mean, after I complete reading the yet-untouched books I bought three/four years ago, that never stop piling one against the other on my pathetic shelves. Hmm, you just gave me a blog post idea.]

With that in mind, I resolved myself to watching the movie, because I had heard that it was beautiful and magical and just exactly my kind of movie.

[NB: If you care to find out about my kind of movie, please refer yourself to “Le Fabuleux Destin d’Amelie Poulain”, or to “Pride and Prejudice”, {the Joe Wright version} or to “The Nightmare before Christmas.”]

And so, on a gloomy Sunday night [I say gloomy because Monday was about a dozen hours away,] I decided to watch Anna Karenina.

Prepared to be intensely blown-away by the movie, instead, I found myself bored, glancing ceaselessly at the time, and waiting for it to be over so that I can check it off my mental checklist, and tell the potential, imaginary people who would ask whether or not I watched it: “Yes, I have seen Anna Karenina.”

It was awkward, at first when Mr. Darcy had a thick Russian mustache. It was more awkward when his character exuded over joyfulness, especially after being imprinted in our [in my] mind as the taciturn, silent and obviously proud Mr. Darcy.

Things got more awkward, and I could not contain my shock… when it turned out that he was playing Karenina’s brother. And that Karenina herself was none other than Elizabeth Bennet. (I mean, Keira Knightley.)

Now, I understand, acknowledge and accept that Wright is a big fan of Knightley's; aren't we all? But being a (very, very, very) big fan of his version of P&P, I have to ask: why? Why did you make Darcy and Lizzie meet again… as brother and sister? Why? After leaving us hanging with that last beautiful scene at sunrise in P&P, Keira Knightley and Matthew McFayden, with their unquestionable onscreen chemistry were only to meet one century later, in Russia, and as brother and sister? Why?!

With that said, with that compromise accepted, I move onto the shorter, much less brilliant review of the movie. Save for the marvelous decorations, the ingenious use of the moving frames inside the stage, a wonderful solution to the call of creativity, and of course, the beyond-gorgeous gowns, headdresses and coats, the snow, and the music (thanks again and again, Dario Marianelli,) I thought the movie was bland.

What? Bland? Yes.

It was just like that big, round, bright green watermelon that looked ravishingly red and juicy on the inside, but that the minute you bit into, realized that it had no taste whatsoever. No taste, whatsoever.

Now, if you ask me why, I would try to tell you, but you have to know that my mind is not so developed as to provide you with a fancy weighty review of the movie. I read well-explained reviews of Anna Karenina, that spoke my thoughts exactly: that the story seemed superficial, when in fact it was meant to showcase the emotional struggle of our heroine’s fatal flaw, that she was supposed to be perceived as the sympathetic victim, not as the selfish, insidious woman who, to us (to me) deserved every bit the fatal destiny that she was met with. Etc.

The movie looked beautiful. Yes.
But truth be spoken, it was only half as beautiful as it looked.

There. My pathetic review to you.


PS: Today is Pride and Prejudice's 200th birthday. One of literature's most read (not to say cherished, because so many Austen haters are suddenly surfacing and they might disagree with me) books.
Happy birthday P&P. (I feel like I'm saying happy birthday to a 200-year-old tree trunk.)


  1. I love how you write! It is so unique and you make me smile and laugh! your sense of humor is awkwardly unique. Enjoyed every bit!

    And when it comes to the relationship between Darcy and Lizzy, I think it is one of the most beautiful love stories that I have come across especially between Mathew and Kiera. Gives me chills whenever I watch it. So thank you for the heads up, I am not prepared to see them as brother and sister at all!

    On another separate note, please write a book :)

  2. aww hanine!!!!!! tomorrow, you are getting a hug. :)


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