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Top Customer Reviews
THE CASTLE, made for Austrian TV, looks like a lot of European TV. It is shot in a much more conventional style than other Haneke films: more cross-cutting, shorter takes, more close-ups. It not only fails to give us the spatial sense of the novel, it can hardly be said to be production designed at all. Mostly, it is shot against nondescript backdrops.
Despite these constraints, THE CASTLE is an entertaining extract of Kafka's novel. It is wholly a Michael Haneke movie, while still spotlighting some aspects of Kafka that can easily get lost in the dense overgrowth of the author's prose. Among these things is the fact that Kafka, as we know from his diaries, was a fan of Chaplin. Ulrich Mühe, too old and too Gentile to be the K. of the novel, nevertheless captures the put-upon Everyman at the heart of the character. The Chaplinesque nature of K., as it turns out, was right there in the novel all along. The same goes with Dickens/Kafka connection. Simply by allowing supporting actors to show a bit of ham, Haneke keeps the proceedings lively and colorful in a way previously camouflaged by Kafka's style.
As a personal film by Haneke, everything remotely evoking psychological states or tending toward metaphor has been surgically removed. We never see the castle.Read more ›
Haneke recreates the oppressive atmosphere of a man inside a struggling world of rules, bureaucracy and existential isolation with a steady narrative pulse, with the snow and cold as silent witnesses.
If you are not acquainted with Kafka, then please refrain to watch it. Because Haneke's personages are always at the border of desperation.
Good cast in plain shape.
The setting isnt the 1920s, as is the book, but rather modern day Austria. Utilizing modern clothing and sets, the backward, distopian Shangra-la cage of the town, which IS the Castle, is captured thru the art direction.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Pretty slow. Not bad if you like Kafka. He's an acquired taste. I fell asleep.Published 9 months ago by breathesagain
Very faithful adaptation of the (unfinished) Kafka novel.Published 11 months ago by Jerrold Levinson
This is the best film adaptation of a Kafka story, novel or short story, I've ever seen. Haneke understands that what made Kafka great was not recreating some vague sense of weird... Read morePublished 23 months ago by Derek Hunter
Poorly made film. The novel would make an excellent film if the screenwriter or director would take some creative liberties.Published 23 months ago by Paul Schulmann
I could not finish watching this movie. Not sure what time period this was taking place in and the acting was seemed very amateur. Read morePublished on August 24, 2013 by Gizmo
Nonsense, no story just wanderd through the film and did not seem to be very cohesive in its story. badPublished on August 20, 2013 by salt94
Kafka may have written a 5 star novel but this director certainly hasn't found a way to make it visually engaging. The "assistants" and women endlessly hit the same silly note. Read morePublished on August 16, 2013 by mr. contrarian
I'm not an expert on Kafka. I only read a couple of his books years ago and have not seen any other films based on his books. Read morePublished on March 12, 2013 by The OC