7.3/10
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89 user 38 critic

Of Human Bondage (1934)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 20 July 1934 (USA)
A young man finds himself attracted to a cold and unfeeling waitress who may ultimately destroy them both.

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Writers:

(screen play), (from the novel by)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
Harry Griffiths
...
Emil Miller
Reginald Sheffield ...
Cyril Dunsford
...
Desmond Roberts ...
Dr. Jacobs
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Charles Coleman ...
(scenes deleted)
...
Chimneysweep (scenes deleted)
Pat Somerset ...
(scenes deleted)
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Storyline

Abandoning artistic ambitions, sensitive and club-footed Philip Carey enrolls in medical school and falls in love with a waitress Mildred Rogers. She rejects him, runs off with a salesman and returns unmarried and pregnant. Philip gets her an apartment and they become engaged. Mildred runs off with another medical student. Philip takes her back again when she returns with her baby. She wrecks his apartment and burns the securities he needs to pay tuition. He gets a job as a salesman, has surgery on his foot, receives an inheritance, and returns to school where he learns Mildred is dying. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The greatest novel of the twentieth century now brings to the screen humanity's tortured heart-cry! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 July 1934 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Escravos do Desejo  »

Box Office

Budget:

$403,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(R C A Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Cromwell had an adaptation of W. Somerset Maugham's novel in mind for his next film and was considering Richard Barthelmess as his male lead. Michael Curtiz had just made a film with Barthelmess called The Cabin in the Cotton (1932) which he screened for Cromwell who was immediately taken by a young actress in a small part in the film. This of course turned out to be Bette Davis and Cromwell championed her landing the part of Mildred. See more »

Goofs

While Bette Davis says "Funny looking little thing, isn't it? I can't believe it's mine." At 43:18 we see the 'Newborn' baby on the bed. But the baby is already at least 3 months old. See more »

Quotes

Thorpe Athelny: I was married to a lady once. Good heavens! Never marry a lady, my boy.
Philip Carey: Oh really? Why?
Thorpe Athelny: Because a lady has a point of view, a personality and an individuality, all to double you with!
See more »

Connections

Featured in South of Reno (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

Hesitation Blues
(1915) (uncredited)
Written by Billy Smythe, Scott Middleton and Art Gillham
Played when Mildred is tearing up the apartment
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A True Classic
17 May 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This movie, even though it is over 70 years old is still a very moving, strong film. Bette Davis, as the slutty, vicious Cockney waitress Mildred is absolutely believable. Watching her performance is still spellbinding. She makes the viewer absolutely despise her and pity her at the same time. Leslie Howard's performance as the weak, obsessed Phillip Carey is not as strong, but I don't see how any actor could hold their own against Ms. Davis's performance. She chews up the scenery in every scene she is in, totally stealing the show. This is the movie that sealed her stardom and she deserved to win the Academy Award, but lost. It was shocking for it's day what with themes of unwed pregnancy, multiple sex partners, and Mildred's vicious language so it is somewhat dated, but still an excellent movie. Just to see the scene where Mildred tells Phillip what she REALLY thinks of him ("You cad, you dirty swine....") is still some of the greatest acting I have ever seen on film.


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