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The Scarlet Letter (1934)

5.3
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Ratings: 5.3/10 from 216 users  
Reviews: 12 user | 2 critic

In the seventeenth century, in Massachusetts, a young woman is forced to wear a scarlet "A" on her dress for bearing a child out of wedlock.

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Title: The Scarlet Letter (1934)

The Scarlet Letter (1934) on IMDb 5.3/10

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Henry B. Walthall ...
Cora Sue Collins ...
Pearl
...
Bartholomew Hockings
Virginia Howell ...
Abigail Crakstone
William Kent ...
Sampson Goodfellow (as William T. Kent)
William Farnum ...
...
Innkeeper
Al O. Henderson ...
Master Wilson (as Al C. Henderson)
Jules Cowles ...
Beadle
Mickey Rentschler ...
Digerie Crakstone
Shirley Jean Rickert ...
Humility Crakstone
Flora Finch ...
Faith Bartle, the Gossip
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Storyline

At the end of the 17th century a impetuous woman of noble birth but poor arrives in Boston when it was just a village rather than a city. As she is married to an old doctor she tries to change her life. Written by Volker Boehm

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Nathaniel Hawthorne's classic tale of sin & redemption!

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance

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Details

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Release Date:

18 September 1934 (USA)  »

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1.37 : 1
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Trivia

Henry B. Walthall played Chillingworth in both this and the 1926 silent version. See more »

Connections

Version of The Scarlet Letter (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

An Adequate If Sometimes Plain Adaptation
23 November 2005 | by (Ohio) – See all my reviews

This is an adequate and generally faithful screen version of Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The Scarlet Letter". It is sometimes lacking in energy and dramatic tension, but both the story and its heroine are tough to do justice to on screen, and of the various attempts to do so, only the silent version with Lillian Gish has ever really worked. This features Colleen Moore as Hester, and it brings out the main points of the story well enough.

Moore's performance is actually good in its own right, but it does not really fill the shoes of Hawthorne's conception of Hester. That's nothing against Moore, a good actress, and indeed she makes this version better than the 1990s attempt, which was nearly unwatchable despite having a cast of well-regarded performers. As Dimmesdale, Hardie Albright gives a mostly plain performance, though there are times when this actually works in bringing out the character's inherent weakness of will. Henry B. Walthall gives a good portrayal of the vengeful Roger.

Most of the sequences work in telling the essentials of the story without frills. Some of the screen time is devoted to comic relief by Alan Hale and William Kent, which provides some light moments, although it never really fits in with the rest of the movie.

Overall, it's a solid effort for its time that does get across the main themes of the story. With a little more character development, it actually might have been rather good.


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