The Rise of Catherine the Great (1934)

Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.4/10 from 379 users  
Reviews: 12 user | 7 critic

Straightforward biography of the Russian empress, up to her assumption of the throne.


, (uncredited)


(play), , 2 more credits »
0Check in

On Disc

at Amazon

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Tells how King Henry VIII came to marry five more times after his divorce from his first wife.

Director: Alexander Korda
Stars: Charles Laughton, Robert Donat, Franklin Dyall
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Alexander Graham Bell falls in love with deaf girl Mabel Hubbard while teaching the deaf and trying to invent means for telegraphing the human voice. She urges him to put off thoughts of ... See full summary »

Director: Irving Cummings
Stars: Don Ameche, Loretta Young, Henry Fonda
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Young Princess Sophia of Germany is taken to Russia to marry the half-wit Grand Duke Peter, son of the Empress. The domineering Empress hopes to improve the royal blood line. Sophia doesn't... See full summary »

Director: Josef von Sternberg
Stars: Marlene Dietrich, John Lodge, Sam Jaffe
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Quick tempered but likable Biff Grimes falls for beautiful Virginia Brush, but he is not the only young man in the neighborhood who is smitten with her.

Director: Raoul Walsh
Stars: James Cagney, Olivia de Havilland, Rita Hayworth
Rembrandt (1936)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

This character study joins the painter at the height of his fame in 1642, when his adored wife suddenly dies and his work takes a dark, sardonic turn that offends his patrons. By 1656, he ... See full summary »

Director: Alexander Korda
Stars: Charles Laughton, Gertrude Lawrence, Elsa Lanchester
The Killers (1964)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Surprised that their contract victim didn't try to run away from them, two professional hit men try to find out who hired them and why.

Director: Don Siegel
Stars: Lee Marvin, Angie Dickinson, John Cassavetes
Drama | Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A duke usurps his brother's land and power, banishing him and his retinue into the forest of Arden. The banished duke's daughter, Rosalind, remains with her cousin Celia. She has fallen in ... See full summary »

Director: Paul Czinner
Stars: Elisabeth Bergner, Laurence Olivier, Sophie Stewart
Pygmalion (1938)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Shaw's play in which a Victorian dialect expert bets that he can teach a lower-class girl to speak proper English and thus be taken for a lady.

Directors: Anthony Asquith, Leslie Howard
Stars: Leslie Howard, Wendy Hiller, Wilfrid Lawson
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A kept woman runs into her one-time fiancé and finds herself torn between love and comfort.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Edna Purviance, Clarence Geldart, Carl Miller
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Englishmen race to find the tomb of Genghis Khan. They have to get there fast, as the evil genius Dr. Fu Manchu is also searching, and if he gets the mysteriously powerful relics, he and ... See full summary »

Directors: Charles Brabin, Charles Vidor
Stars: Boris Karloff, Lewis Stone, Karen Morley
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

What do women want? Don Juan is aging. He's arrived secretly in Seville after a 20 year absence. His wife Dolores, whom he hasn't lived with in five years, still loves him. He refuses to ... See full summary »

Director: Alexander Korda
Stars: Douglas Fairbanks, Merle Oberon, Bruce Winston
Dekigokoro (1933)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Two Tokyo co-workers come across a destitute young lady in search of a place to live.

Director: Yasujirô Ozu
Stars: Takeshi Sakamoto, Nobuko Fushimi, Den Obinata


Complete credited cast:
Grand Duke Peter (as Douglas Fairbanks Jnr.)
Gerald du Maurier ...
Irene Vanbrugh ...
Princess Anhalt-Zerbst
Joan Gardner ...
Dorothy Hale ...
Countess Olga
Diana Napier ...
Countess Vorontzova
Griffith Jones ...
Gibb McLaughlin ...
Bestujhev (as Gibb MacLaughlin)
Clifford Heatherley ...
Laurence Hanray ...
Allan Jeayes ...
Col. Karnilov


In 1745 a German princess, renamed Catherine, arrives to marry Grand Duke Peter of Russia, whom she initially likes. But his suspicious, unstable nature gradually estranges them, and Peter finds solace with pretty courtiers. Catherine invents her own (fictitious) lovers, temporarily improving matters. Alas, accession to the throne brings out the worst in Peter, and loyal Catherine is urged to assume power. Written by Rod Crawford <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Biography | Drama


See all certifications »





Release Date:

9 February 1934 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Katharina die Große  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


At the time of its USA re-release in 1947, this film was most frequently paired in second position on a double bill topped by the re-release of _The Private Life of Henry VIII (1933)_. See more »


When the Grand Duke Peter is talking with guard at the bottom of the stairs about Ivan Ivanovich. The guards crossed belts on his chest are repositioned when the scene cuts to a close up of the guard. See more »


Version of Young Catherine (1991) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

the other Scarlet Empress movie of 1934
9 November 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Yet more intrigue from the court of imperial Russia, which (at least according to movie history) must have functioned entirely on plots, counter-plots, rumors, gossip and scandal. Produced in England by the celebrated Alexander Korda, this handsome spectacle stars Douglas Fairbanks Jr. (less dynamic but a better actor than his father) as the petulant heir to the royal throne who marries the petite German princess Catherine more or less against his will. Favored by the Queen Mother and beloved by her subjects, the sensible and modest Catherine has only one flaw in her character: an unquenchable love for her power-mad, playboy husband. Their bittersweet love/hate rivalry must have seemed quite sophisticated to a 1934 audience, and seen today the film still possesses a freshness rarely seen in early sound productions, thanks in large part to a quality script and some lively, natural performances.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Available online now AgiaFotia
Discuss The Rise of Catherine the Great (1934) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: