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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Russia's Greatest Love Story
I was initially undecided as to which of the various film versions of this tragic epic love story to opt for, but eventually decided on the Vivien Leigh/Ralph Richardson (1948) release.
Although we have not seen any of the other versions, my wife and I were transfixed by this film; the torment suffered by Anna and the appalling attitude of her boring, high and...
Published 21 months ago by Nostalgia

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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The 2012 Studiocanal release
I bought this version hoping the picture quality would be a lot better than the Polish import version (which Amazon also sells) that I had bought only a few months before this version was released. Thankfully the picture quality throughout the film is far better, however at several points, particularly near the end there are 2, 4 or 5 thin,vertical black lines on the...
Published 22 months ago by Rob S


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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The 2012 Studiocanal release, 24 Sep 2012
By 
Rob S (Devon, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Anna Karenina [DVD] [1948] (DVD)
I bought this version hoping the picture quality would be a lot better than the Polish import version (which Amazon also sells) that I had bought only a few months before this version was released. Thankfully the picture quality throughout the film is far better, however at several points, particularly near the end there are 2, 4 or 5 thin,vertical black lines on the picture which are not there on the Polish import or the version they showed on ITV very recently

[...]

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They disappear once Anna boards her final train and her last look at the oncoming train is not blighted but I am very surprised they hadn't been removed prior to release.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Russia's Greatest Love Story, 4 Oct 2012
By 
Nostalgia (Nottingham, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Anna Karenina [DVD] [1948] (DVD)
I was initially undecided as to which of the various film versions of this tragic epic love story to opt for, but eventually decided on the Vivien Leigh/Ralph Richardson (1948) release.
Although we have not seen any of the other versions, my wife and I were transfixed by this film; the torment suffered by Anna and the appalling attitude of her boring, high and mighty, husband - cold as any Russian winter - who is concerned only with his political standing. His treatment of Anna in relation to their son, when he becomes aware of her extramarital affair is thoroughly despicable, even though she may be in the wrong.
In some respects, my wife felt that parts of the film were a little frightening, especially the premonitions Anna has of death, paralleled with a fatality witnessed early on in the film.
Although the story as depicted in the film has been outlined elsewhere, I have not read the book, so I am unable to comment on how faithfully this film version represents it, but I am pleased that I purchased this dvd.
As another reviewer has remarked, black vertical lines are noticeable for a few minutes towards the end of this particular print, apparently taken from the National Film Archive Collection, but which is not uncommon in old films, and which I should have thought may be difficult to eradicate. I was also rather amused by the so-obvious 'model train' plastered with icy snow on which Anna is travelling at the beginning of the film, but then visual effects have since improved considerably. Bearing in mind that the original film was released some 65 years ago, the picture quality is very good and I would recommend it to anyone interested in films of this genre.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AMAZING!, 1 Oct 2012
This review is from: Anna Karenina [DVD] [1948] (DVD)
Vivien's performance as Anna Karenina is once again Oscar Worthy, the costumes designed by Cecil Beaton are wonderful and Vivien looks arguably more beautiful than in Gone With The Wind! The film is a piece of art and very dedicated to Tolstoy's play. When watching the film it is constantly gripping you with twists and turns and it is definitely one of Vivien's best. As the new Anna Karenina has been recently released I hope this gains more attention and acclaim it deserves.
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24 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars VIVIEN LEIGH PORTRAYS ANNA KARENINA THE TRAGIC HEROINE, 13 Nov 2006
By 
Andrea Bowhill (England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Anna Karenina [DVD] [1948] (DVD)
Anna Karenina is set in dramatic Russia 1875, Leigh takes the lead as Anna, the film opens with Anna's bother Stefan Oblonsky (Hugh Dempster) discussing with a friend a martial spat that he had with his wife, she has threaten to leave him. He has asked his sister to intervene, Anna immediately takes the train from St Petersburg to Moscow in a bid to help her brother, her company during the train journey is Countess Vronsky (Helen Haye) who herself is on her way to meet her son. Arriving at the station Anna briefly makes the acquaintance of the Countess Son, Count Vronsky (The very young and dashing Kieron Moore) although the meeting was very brief Count Vronsky passion is sparked by Anna's beauty. While Anna is visiting Moscow the Count tries to pursue Anna, although Anna loves the attention and has a wonderful time she keeps her senses for she is already married with child to a very influential man in society.

Anna takes the train back to St Petersburg to meet her husband Alexei Karenina (Ralph Richardson) Alexei is a boring bureaucratic husband who pays little attention to his wife caught in a loveless marriage with nothing in common apart from their son, Anna's mind begins to wander. Count Vronsky had followed Anna back to St Petersburg's in pursuit refusing to give up, he has the knowledge that Anna is unhappy in marriage. Count Vronsky persistence finally pays off, Anna beings an affair at first discretely but soon Anna can bare no more and leaves her husband, in doing so she must pay the consequences of her decision, alienated by her husband and society she is forced to leave with her lover for Venice, Italy but while away Anna feel the Count is bored with his isolated life she now lives in desperate fear of believing her lover will lose interest and abandon her.

They return to Russia but Anna fears grow worst each day, while Count Vronsky can walk among society with out any problems, Anna must pay as punishment, she is caught up in double standards of society she must suffer isolation for cheating on her husband. Her loneliness and fears within, leads to a tragic end.

Directed by Julien Duviver and based on the book by Leo Tolstoy. Anna Karenina was released in 1947, Vivien Leigh who's captivating beauty and talent should have been perfect for this role, unfortunately compared to her other films Leigh did not put in one of her better performances but that wasn't to say it was a bad one either. The whole cast keep it together throughout with their strong acting skills and has this film ticking over. Worth even viewing for the elegant set decor and of course Cecil Beaton's lavish costume designs.

A.Bowhill
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Turgid and unromantic, 16 Sep 2012
By 
Henry Turner (Manchester, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Anna Karenina [DVD] [1948] (DVD)
In many ways Anna Karenina is one of the most cinematic of novels. When you read it you can imagine exactly how every scene should be played. But in attempting to transfer the novel to the screen most directors have come unstuck. This, I'm afraid, is one of the dullest, least romantic and least Tolstoyan adaptations. It plods along, uncertain which line of narrative to follow. As such there is little focus and you just don't care about the characters. Ralph Richardson is great as Karenin. Kieron Moore as Vronsky, Anna's Lover, is as unengaging as Aaron Johnson in the latest version. Vivien Leigh is fine - but no more. Leigh seemed to specialise in damaged, dangerous women, but her Anna just doesn't seem to work. A line I never thought I'd ever use: I preferred Keira Knightley!

The film was clearly shot on a limited budget in post War Britain. Some of the austerity measures in the production design don't really make the grade. There's a dreadful shot of a model train (very badly realised) for example, when we first see Anna that completely throws you out of the world of the film. But the real problem for me was watching a film that lacked both focus and drama. The film isn't dreadful, but neither is it a highlight of late 1940s British cinema.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A classic adaption, 17 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Anna Karenina [DVD] [1948] (DVD)
Perfect casting with Vivien Leigh and Ralph Richardson especially. Stunning costumes and a superb score. A treasure from our golden age to be cherished.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great., 2 Oct 2013
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This review is from: Anna Karenina [DVD] [1948] (DVD)
I choose this rating as it was enjoyable , considering it was an old film also the quality was also very good, would recommend this to anyone, also quick despatch with thanks again.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Looks lovely, 6 Sep 2012
By 
W. Russell - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Anna Karenina (1948) (DVD)
Vivien Leigh is gorgeous, and so in Keiron Moore - she, however, can act. It is handsome to look at, contains some fine performance, but dramatically is pretty inert. Worth getting to compare and contrast with the version starring Garbo - that one suffers from some of the players later careers oddly. It is by no means a great film, but it is a difficult book to dramatise.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vivian Leigh Brilliant!, 10 Sep 2013
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This review is from: Anna Karenina [DVD] [1948] (DVD)
Only Vivian Leigh's portrayal of Anna Karenina made this a film classic. I'll not forget the contribution of Ralph Richardson and Kieron Moore who were excellent in their parts as well.
I have seen 3 of these Anna Karenina's. This is the best.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good sound production with some excellent acting, 4 Aug 2013
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This review is from: Anna Karenina [DVD] [1948] (DVD)
A wonderful example of how films used to be made.Long scenes which advance the story clearly and in ways the author intended.
The acting is so much of its time, dramatic and "over the top" Vivien Leigh showing us what it was to be a "Great Actress" in her day.
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Anna Karenina [DVD] [1948]
Anna Karenina [DVD] [1948] by Julien Duvivier (DVD - 2012)
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