Where no Grand Inquisitor has gone before

Monday, 21 January 2008 — 11:37pm | Adaptations, Film, Literature

Just shy of three weeks ago, I stayed at the decidedly unhygienic Ambassador City Jomtien, which was by all appearances Thailand’s number one tourist destination for indulgent Russian oligarchs. It was timely, then, that when I endeavoured to head to the beach for a spot of reading under the palms, the next book in my endless queue was none other than The Brothers Karamazov.

This was my first time through Dostoevsky’s magisterial opus, and at more than one juncture I observed that with its high moral intrigue, impassioned cast of players and unreserved Biblical ambition—not to mention the best courtroom speeches in prose fiction (themselves capable satires of psychoanalytic narrative analysis decades before the study formally existed)—surely somebody has had the bravado to attempt a film.

As it turns out, Richard Brooks wrote and directed an English-language film adaptation back in 1958 (read the contemporaneous New York Times review) starring—get this—Yul Brynner and William Shatner. For those of you with access to Turner Classic Movies, it plays 7 February.


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One rejoinder to “Where no Grand Inquisitor has gone before”

  1. Ah. Splendid. I read this for a paper back in high school. The first few hundred pages were quite meh but it sure became a page turner soon after. Unless you’re a speed reader, I guess you haven’t finished its 1000+ pages. 🙂

    Thursday, 24 January 2008 at 5:11am

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