by (based on the novel by Vladimir Nabokov):
The fact that
censorship at the time of this movie's production was strict as far as
explicit eroticism was concerned isn't at all the main problem with this
adaptation of Vladimir Nabokov's iconic novel. Not only
is this a non-erotic, romantically shallow portrait, it is also a
conceptual misfire with way too much focus on the mysterious Quilty.
Peter Sellers is charming (ultimately too charming as it were), but the Quilty/Humbert relation seems out of place and takes the focus away from
the nature of Humberts character and his relationship with Lolita.
have said in my review of Adrian Lyne's version of Lolita
(1997), it is
a real challenge to convert Humbert Humbert's complex inner thoughts to
the screen, but Kubrick doesn't even really try. This is a film that
seemingly follows every plot-line in the novel slavishly, but it
doesn't ever dig into the psychological aspects which are so important to
the story. Furthermore, there is no spark between Mason and Lyons
(apart from a couple of scenes early on), and James Mason - although
appropriately suave, lacks confidence and command in the lead. One of
Kubrick's most disappointing films.