Generally favorable reviews - based on 41 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 41
  2. Negative: 1 out of 41
  1. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Sep 9, 2012
    The Wright/Stoppard Anna Karenina is not a total success, but it's a bold and creative response to the novel.
  2. Reviewed by: Lawrence Toppman
    Nov 29, 2012
    The arc of the 800-page novel, crammed into 130 minutes, becomes a line as flat as the heart monitor of a dead patient. A story that ought to possess the mad grandeur of an opera acquires the tedious regularity of soap opera.
  3. Reviewed by: Kimberley Jones
    Nov 28, 2012
    There's no denying the dazzling effect, but a fireworks sequence midfilm only underscores the sad fact that there's no lasting illumination here, only the fast-burn spitzing of bang snaps.
  4. Reviewed by: Betsy Sharkey
    Nov 15, 2012
    In the end Anna Karenina lets you down - visually stunning, emotionally overwrought, beautifully acted, but not quite right.
  5. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Sep 6, 2012
    Dazzlingly designed and staged in a theatrical setting so as to suggest that the characters are enacting assigned roles in life, this tight and pacy telling of a 900 page-plus novel touches a number of its important bases but lacks emotional depth, moral resonance and the simple ability to allow its rich characters to experience and drink deeply of life.
  6. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Nov 16, 2012
    One of the many, many things wrong with Joe Wright's Anna Karenina, starring Keira Knightley as literature's most famous adulteress – take that, Emma Bovary! – is that one never feels the love. It's a conceit in search of a movie. It could just as easily have been titled "Décor."
  7. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Nov 15, 2012
    This latest iteration of the Tolstoy classic was clearly the product of audacious thinking, stylishly applied. Still, the thinking was as wrongheaded as it was hollow-hearted. Yet another elaborate production chases its audience away.
  8. Reviewed by: Keith Uhlich
    Nov 13, 2012
    The more the visual ephemera piles up, the more the emotional thrust of the story gets buried beneath all the monotonous pageantry. (Anna's many tête-à-têtes with her two lovers - especially a should-be-dizzying dance-seduction scene - are frigid pomp without any real heat.)
  9. 40
    Every unhappy movie is unhappy in its own way, and Joe Wright's Anna Karenina is as boldly original a miscalculation as any you're likely to see.
  10. Reviewed by: Neil Smith
    Sep 3, 2012
    Pimped, primped and dressed to the nines, Joe Wright's Tols-toy story looks the business. Like a disappointing Christmas present, though, the pleasure quickly evaporates once you remove the shiny paper.
  11. Reviewed by: Mick LaSalle
    Nov 15, 2012
    You know there is something seriously wrong with Anna Karenina when you start rooting for the train.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 116 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 33
  2. Negative: 7 out of 33
  1. Nov 22, 2012
    Keira Knightley and Jude Law are extraordinary. Wright's unique and beautifully conceived version of the film, using Tom Stoppard's intelligent adaptation, struck me as perfect for rendering the depth and complexity of the story. The "artifice" of the setting, design and art direction are brought forth with sensitivity and satisfying wholeness. Highly, highly recommended for adults who want to participate in the construction of a wonderful film and story. Full Review »
  2. Feb 3, 2013
    I am russian. I read 'Anna Karenina'. And you know what this film left mixed impression. Everything is according to Tolstoy, the actors are brilliant, however the director afforded himself to add a thing of his own to the film every scene of the film was a scene in a theatre! That is nonsense, Tolstoy didn't write that... And only this director-made 'feature' made of the film almost a total bull***t. Whithout that 'feature' the film would be great. Full Review »
  3. Dec 2, 2012
    Tolstoy must be "turning over in his grave" if he saw what has been done to his book. The acting is ok although Jude Law really did a fine job, but Knightly has really overplayed her role to the point of laughter at her emoting. But mostly Stoppard has turned a fine literary work into something laughable. The costuming is lovely, and the choreography is much overdone-it looks foppish. Vrovsky is portrayed often as a gay blade. If there is one film to be missed this season, this is it. Full Review »