Doctor Zhivago

Doctor Zhivago. Beautifully set, shot, and acted, but know that this is pure soap opera. That said, after a little warm-up, I was rapt for the first two hours. The last hour is weaker. Just set your skeptic filters low and let yourself get swept away. It’s a great cast of imperfect people. Our hero, Omar Sharif, is a little annoying. The reliable Rod Steiger is a perfect asshole. Julie Christie is tough, and in her role as Lara is maybe the most attractive modestly-dressed character I’ve seen on film. Frumpy Russian winterwear never looked so good. Perfect lighting helps. Anyway, Ebert calls it “an example of superb old-style craftsmanship at the service of a soppy romantic vision, and although its portentous historical drama evaporates once you return to the fresh air, watching it can be seductive”. I would watch it again.