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This tour-de-force of persecution and paranoia is based on the writings of Franz Kafka.
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The poor quality of the reel (the film was nearly lost), also make it that some lines go unheard and make characters difficult to identify. The "mise en scene" also adds to this confusion, with Josef K. walking through numerous strange rooms, corridors and halls.
Still though, the film can help visualize certain elements from the book that might be difficult to imagine otherwise. Also, it is important to remember that Kafka's work was unfinished and unassembled, and Welles has attempted to reflect this non-linearity within the film.
All in all, I do recommend you see this film if you have read or plan on reading the original work, but you might be very confused by the storyline without this base knowledge.
As a film I couldn't sit through it at once, I had to get up and return a couple times because the convoluted situation makes it hard to follow. This aspect is surely purposeful, Welles is a master of storytelling and images, and the production itself proves amazing.
I would highly recommend this for it's adaptation of Kafka's posthumous story, beautiful and horrible direction, cinematography, set and art direction and music.
charge specified, is the actual reason proceedings have started against the individual. So was the situation in the famous case of al capone, and history and our court system today is littered with such stories. Here we have Orson Welles take on this nature of our society, a version of a kafka tale, this european version entitled The Trial. A famous star anthony perkins, who plays the role, an innocent person betrayed by society, and exposing the emptiness of what society has become, in which the accused are the innocent, and who exemplify all the values which here the bureaucracy of life has lost. The situation may have even become worse since this film was produced. The key to the movie is the prologue, in which we see the Perkins character running up a staircase, chased by a mob of females, and later on about having his picture painted, a profile manufactered by an artist, and the ending when we witness an explosion like some nuclear event signifying what? The film was made during the height of the cold war, the cuban missile crisis, and though it no longer speaks to that, the film can be seen today against the backdrop of disintegrating values and powers, from today's political world. The film opens with police investigating a man for a crime he never finds out what it is, and its never pointed out in some unspecified country, perhaps standing for every country. He insists he has committed no subversion, nor is he a pornographer...and the idea behind the film is society's bureaucracy and judges are undertaking this task, and there are incidents with the perkins character having relations with a female, loving those who've been innocently condemned. An interesting film to watch which has gained interest over time....Welles wrote and directed this film and plays a small role...he really has no rival in film making.
Most recent customer reviews
"The Trial" (1962) is directed by Orson Welles (Citizen Kane), and is based on the novel by Franz Kafka. Anthony Perkins stars as Joseph K. Read morePublished 21 months ago by G. Edmonson
I cannot in good conscience write a good review for a DVD that is so poor in transfer quality that it looks worse than VHS. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Damon Johnson
The images are a bit blurred and the sound can be better.
It seems to be a transfer from a VHS tape.
Not recommended even if it's cheap.
The Trial is Orson Welles' adaptation of the Franz Kafka novel of the same name. It follows the story of Josef K. Read morePublished on April 28 2004 by Melissa Martinez-areffi
This film is dark in more ways than one. My copy was way dark. Of course it is emotionally dark also. Didn't much like the novel in college & my opinion hasn't improved. Read morePublished on April 26 2004 by JOHN GODFREY