Movie Review // Ashes in the Snow

Movie Review // Ashes in the SnowAshes in the Snow on October 12th, 2018

In 1941, a 16 year-old aspiring artist and her family are deported to Siberia amidst Stalin's brutal dismantling of the Baltic region. One girl's passion for art and her never-ending hope will break the silence of history.

Fun fact, I’ve never written a movie review before. So, if you’re looking for a critical analysis, you won’t find that here. I’m sharing my thoughts because of my love for the book, and now the movie.

General Thoughts

I was beyond excited when I found out that Between Shades of Gray, now Ashes in the Snow, was having a movie adaptation. My love for this book is immense, and I was curious on how it would be brought out on-screen. Overall, I am happy to say I’m pleased, but there are always gripes, right?

Honestly, what I felt was missing was the connection to Lina. In the book, we get a front row seat into her thoughts, and how everything happening was affecting her. I didn’t SEE that in the movie. Had i just watched the movie without reading the book, I wouldn’t have known much about her, her family, etc. Maybe that was the point? Either way, the slight disconnect was there.

You may also like: Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys


I’m not picky on casting, but I did have a very vivid picture of the characters whist reading, and the casting is well done. Bel Powley is Lina through and through. 

Actually, I thought every character was well-chosen and brought each character, as I imagined, to light. This couldn’t have been an easy one to film, as it wasn’t each to watch or read about, and so I applaud them all.

In Comparison

I wont be naive to say that rewriting a script for a movie is easy, and I know that things generally change during the adaptation due to screen time, story development, etc. But I do feel that there were key elements from the book that were missing, that I felt were important enough to be in the movie, just to name a few (warning, Spoilers):

  • Relationship development between Lena and Andrius.
  • Jonas illness.
  • The early discovery of their father at the train.
  • The ending changed.

That being said, overall I felt it stuck to the main points of the book, which I am happy about.


I’m glad I was able to see it – and thought overall, it was well done. If you haven’t seen it, I HIGHLY recommend reading the book first! Obviously. 

Tell me your thoughts

  • Have you read the book, Between Shades of Gray? If so, what did you think?
  • Have you seen the movie? What are your thoughts?

5 thoughts on “Movie Review // Ashes in the Snow

  1. Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight

    I skipped the spoiler section because I REALLY want to read the book first (so I am glad to see you say that I definitely should, I will!) but I also am super glad that the movie is worth it too! I am sad that it’s been so under-hyped too- I legit didn’t know it existed until a couple weeks ago, what even!?

    1. tonyalee

      I should have used a tag, but oh well LOL

      I found out like, two weeks before it was released and I was totally shocked! It was very under hyped. But yes, READ THE BOOK!

  2. Laura Thomas

    I need to read the book before I watch the movie. Even if the movie doesn’t exactly follow the book, I feel like I have some insight into what drives the characters. Thanks for the fabulous review!

Leave a Reply