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Joseph K. (Kyle MacLachlan) awakens one morning, to find two strange men in his room, telling him he has been arrested. Joseph is not told, with what he is charged, and despite being "arrested", is allowed to remain free and go to work. But, despite the strange nature of his arrest, Joseph soon learns that his trial, however odd, is very real, and tries desperately to spare himself from the court's judgement.Written by
Mike Myers <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To anyone that has taken time to read it or any small part of it, Kafka's body of work does not readily lend itself to film adaptation. His fiction is savagely personal, and so the vast majority plays out in the minds of the central characters rather than through action or dialogue. And when there is dialogue, it is subtly understated, absurdly simplistic, powerful and surreal. His novels were his nightmares, and in writing they became our nightmares, imagining his quiet and steady suffocation and contemplating our own. Committing true horror to film is difficult by any standards, and this film fails outright.
It lacks the brutal eeriness that Kafka relates. It lacks the finesse of Kafka's words. It lacks the expressive thought that is instrumental in deciphering his protagonist. It lacks all but Kafka's story (and his name), and this story is really too simple. The nuances of the language never emerge and any lingering boldness is soon lost in boredom. To translate Kafka into English requires passion and true understanding; to translate Kafka to another medium requires nothing less than inspiration, and this director and his cast lack it entirely.
If you want a well-realized, true-to-Kafka film, find American animator Caroline Leaf's "The Metamorphosis of Mr. Samsa" or Orson Welles' adaptation of this same novel, or even Rudolph Noelte's 1971 version of "The Castle."
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