Orson Welles Narrates Animated Version of Kafka’s Parable, “Before the Law”

In 1962, Orson Welles direct­ed The Tri­al, a film based on Franz Kafka’s last and per­haps best-known nov­el. (Read it online here, or find it in our col­lec­tion of Free eBooks.) Shot in Zagreb, Dubrovnik, Rome, Milan and Paris, the film starred Antho­ny Perkins, Jeanne More­au, Romy Schnei­der and Welles him­self. And while crit­ics had mixed feel­ings about the film (some loved it, some did­n’t), Welles’ feel­ings were unam­biva­lent. A few years lat­er, Welles told the BBC, “Say what you will, but The Tri­al is the best film I have ever made. One repeats one­self only when one is fatigued. Well, I was­n’t fatigued. I have nev­er been so hap­py as when I made that film.”

The Tri­al starts with Welles nar­rat­ing an ani­mat­ed ver­sion of “Before the Law,” a para­ble from The Tri­al. And then the action begins. Find the para­ble above, and the film right here. And many more great Free Movies in our col­lec­tion.

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Relat­ed Con­tent:

Franz Kaf­ka: The Short Ani­mat­ed Film

Orson Welles Vin­tage Radio

Orson Welles’ The Stranger: The Full Movie

Free­dom Riv­er: A Para­ble Told by Orson Welles

Orson Welles Nar­rates Ani­ma­tion of Plato’s Cave Alle­go­ry

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