The Information on `Onegin'

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The Independent Culture
What Is It?

First-time director Martha Fiennes' brave adaptation of Russian writer Alexander Pushkin's 1833 tragi-romantic verse novel.

Who's In It?

It's something of a family affair as Martha's brother, Magnus, composed the score, while other sibling Ralph - as well as producing the film - plays Evgeny Onegin, who abandons his dissolute life in St Petersburg to start afresh on his uncle's country estate. There he befriends a young poet, Vladimir Lensky (Toby Stephens), his fiancee Olga (Lena Headey) and her sister, Tatyana (Liv Tyler).

What They Say About It

"Onegin is ambitious and honourable, but for all the devotion of Ralph and Martha Fiennes, it lacks the vital core of psychological truth," Anthony Quinn, The Independent.

"Onegin is a story which interrupts and withholds its emotional discharge from us, and this is an alienating and baffling experience for the cinema audience... but there still remains much that is worthwhile in this high-minded adaptation," Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian.

"Handsome and moving, if finally enigmatic... even if grand pathos isn't achieved, Ms Fiennes makes a brave and welcome stab at it," Wally Hammond, Time Out.

Where You Can See It

Onegin (12, 106 mins) is currently on general release.