Cinema: To Russia with Love

Doctor Zhivago. Behind the opaque, frosted window pane of a room in Moscow, a candle's flame slowly melts a circle through which the camera peers at a young man reading a letter. As he absorbs terrible revelations about the girl he loves, the circle becomes a poetic, crystaline metaphor for his swollen anguish and the inevitable burning away of youth's illusions. Such fully visualized moments are the key to Director David Lean's triumph over the challenge of filming Boris Pasternak's monumental bestseller. With monastic zeal (TIME, Dec. 24), he has translated the book...

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