The Metamorphosis - has captured imaginations and inspired the arts since it was written in 1912 and first published in book form in 1916, yet the novella has evaded a faithful film adaptation until now.
The cast of Metamorphosis is led by Maureen Lipman, Robert Pugh and Laura Rees and narrated by Tim Pigott-Smith. Together they expertly bring Franz Kafka's dark and comedic tale of frustration and inadequacy to life.
METAMORPHOSIS - CENTENARY EDITION is the film version of the story of Gregor Samsa, a travelling salesman in fabrics, who wakes up one morning after disturbing dreams to find himself transformed in his bed into a giant and verminous insect-like creature.
The narrative traces the interaction of Gregor and his family as he slowly starves to death for want of the right kind of sustenance. His death brings relief and rejoicing for his family, and releases them to a new, fresher, more positive and independent life without him.
Before his transformation, Gregor had assumed the dutiful responsibility of providing for his parents and his sister Grete Samsa (LAURA REES) when his father’s business had collapsed five years earlier. To keep things together, he had pushed himself into a job he detested and got up at four each morning, rain or shine, to travel the country pedalling his cloth samples when his real desire was for artistic expression, successful human relationships and emotional fulfilment.
Gregor’s transformation forces the previously indolent family to take on new roles. Seizing the opportunity to find some purpose in life, the sister assumes responsibility for the creature’s care; angered by his son’s sudden incapacity to provide for the family, the father (ROBERT PUGH) is forced out to work; with her instinctive maternal love rendered ineffectual by the dominance of the father and the sister, the mother (MAUREEN LIPMAN) can do nothing but watch her son’s decline.
With the breadwinner now disfigured and deformed, the family’s drastically reduced income obliges them to take in lodgers (AIDAN McARDLE, PAUL THORNLEY and LIAM McKENNA), a shameful progression for such well-to-do people, and the final catalyst for the sister to lash out and attack the monster for the family's fate.
The brutish charlady (JANET HENFREY) disposes of Gregor’s emaciated carcass and the family can live again. For the first time in months they leave their shadowy apartment and venture into the sunny world outside to celebrate their freedom from a dreadful burden.