Masterpiece Theatre: Anna Karenina [2 Discs] [DVD]

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Special Features

  • Access to the Masterpiece Theatre web site
  • Scene selection
  • Closed captions
  • Described video for the visually impaired
  • Closed Captioned


In 1978, America's PBS made the wise decision of running the ten-part 1977 British adaptation of Leo Tolstoy's tragic novel Anna Karenina. Twenty-two years later, the Boston-based public TV station WGBH entered into another felicitous partnership with the BBC, and the result was a shorter (four-part), but no less vivid adaptation of the oft-filmed Tolstoy work. Naturally, the main emphasis was on the triangular relationship between the titular Anna (Helen McCrory), her influential older husband, Karenin (Stephen Dillane), and the handsome, but faithless Count Vronsky (Kevin McKidd), culminating in disgrace, ostracization, and finally death for the hapless heroine. This time, however, scriptwriter (Allan Cubitt) also gave plenty of air space to the fascinating subplots involving the characters of Levin (Douglas Henshall), Kitty (Paloma Baeza), Oblonsky (Mark Strong), and Dolly (Amanda Root). Filmed largely on-location in Poland (with several prominent Polish actors in the supporting cast), Anna Karenina made its British television bow on May 9, 2000. ~ Hal Erickson
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