Keira Knightley and director Joe Wright just love those high-art literary adaptations: After working together on Pride And Prejudice and Atonement, they’ve chosen to tackle another canonical masterpiece, Anna Karenina. Tolstoy’s classic tells the tragic tale of a young, disenchanted, high-society wife who does the barely thinkable in 19th century-Russia, abandoning her loveless marriage and surrendering to the desire to be with her charming suitor.
While the oft-christened “greatest novel ever written” has been adapted into feature films plenty of times—the most recent being 1997’s Sean Bean and Sophie Marceau version—only the 1935 Anna Karenina with Greta Garbo has walked away with both critical acclaim and commercial success. But given that the Knightley/Wright team has proven adept at reinvigorating even the clichéd Jane Austen movie, there’s every reason to believe they could successfully contemporize such well-worn material again.
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