Monday, August 22, 2011

Review: A Doll's House (1973)

I had to read this play for school a couple of years ago. While I was reading it, it was tolerable, but then once I got to the end it was very disappointing. I happened to see that this was on Netflix's Instant Streaming, and, having nothing better to really watch at the moment, I thought I would try to watch this even though I was not fond of the play. I also happened to see that Anna Massey was in this movie, so I thought "maybe this will be interesting..."

Note: Unfortunately, I couldn't find screenshots of the movie. Sorry about that.
DVD Box Art

After years of being poor, Torvald and Nora Helmer finally have plenty of money to have a very nice Christmas. But when Torvald's coworker threatens to reveal that Nora forged her father's signiture on a loan to get money for a trip for Torvald's health, Nora tries to hide that fact from Torvald.

You might recognize a couple of characters in here. As Torvald, you will notice a young Anthony Hopkins. Claire Bloom (Nora) was also in The King's Speech as Queen Mary. And also, Anna Massey (Kristine Linde) was also in He Knew He Was Right as Miss/Aunt Stanbury.

I found both Torvald and Nora to be very irritating. Between his treating her like a child and the squirrel noises that she makes trying to be cute, they got very irritating quickly. Spoiler As I said in my introduction, I found the ending to be very disappointing. The ending was that Nora, after years of not being taken seriously by Torvald, leaves Torvald and her children. There are many people that applaud her decision, but I cannot. I found that what she did was very selfish: she abandoned her responsibilities, at the very least, to her children to find out who she is. And she also didn't even attempt to work things out with Torvald; she just left him. In this movie, they made it so that Torvald slapped Nora after he found out what she did, but I don't think he did in the play. But even still, she didn't even try to work it out her problems with him, which really bothers me. End of Spoiler

Anna Massey did a great job at acting. I didn't know she was in here when I started to watch the movie, but then I saw her name in the credits and recognized her name. She was probably one of the characters that didn't irritate me. She was level-headed, sensible, and wanted to be of some use after her husband died.

The scenery was okay. The entire play is supposed to take place in one or two rooms, but they moved it around more in the movie (which would make sense: if someone wanted to talk to Krogstad, the antagonist, why would they go to the Helmer's residence?).

The costuming wasn't the worst that I've seen. It was good overall, but I've seen better. The costumes were from (I would say) around 1875 - 1883, which in the time that the play was published.

Overall: 1/5
Well, I gave it a shot. I never really liked A Doll's House (In fact, I'm not fond of Henrik Ibsen), but I still thought I would give this movie a try. This movie just wasn't good. There is a scene that looks like it could get mature, but it doesn't. There is a little bit of swearing (Nora swearing just because she isn't allowed).

A Doll's House is available on DVD. It runs for 105 minutes and is rated G (though I would say it should be rated PG).

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