This chapter gave me a bit of a shock coming when it did, only because – believe it or not – this is where the Bondarchuk film actually ends.

In a way, that might seem abrupt, but this reunion between Pierre and Natsha pretty much tells you everything that you need to know.

But those of us going for the full experience will be happy to know that this is just the beginning (of the end) and that – a bit like Lord of the Rings – there is a fair amount of wrapping up to be enjoyed in the meantime.

In a way, this feels like the companion piece to the time Natasha and Pierre met before the war started – when he first told her that he liked her after she’d caused the scandal with Anatole (and what a long time ago that was, eh?).

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2 thoughts on “One-Year War and Peace 15.15 – A Reunion

  1. Even when I read War and Peace the first time I had, by this point, already seen the Bondarchuk film and so knew, of course, who the woman in the black dress was. It was a shame, really, because I think it would have been an even more magical chapter to read, had I not known that. But, even so, I just love this chapter and the beautiful scene it describes, and we see how much and yet how little Pierre and Natasha have grown, and changed, and aged. The connection between them now seems, even at this stage, intense. Maybe that’s because, for all their differences, they now share something much more profound than those differences – the nearness and horror of loss and death, not only of Andrei, so dear to them both, but of so many others, too.

    But whatever lies at the core of this new connection that sparks between the two of them, it is just so beautifully described by Tolstoy.

  2. At the end of the ‘Hepburn’ version, the one in the mid-fifties, the end scenes are of Natasha and everyone going back into their home and finding some parts of it were still livable.

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