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A Tale of Two Cities (1935)

Not Rated | | Drama, History, Romance | 25 December 1935 (USA)
A pair of lookalikes, one a former French aristocrat and the other an alcoholic English lawyer, fall in love with the same woman amongst the turmoil of the French Revolution.

Directors:

, (uncredited)

Writers:

(novel), (screen play) | 5 more credits »
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »
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Cast

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Fritz Leiber ...
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Mitchell Lewis ...
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Storyline

An elaborate adaptation of Dickens' classic tale of the French Revolution. Dissipated lawyer Sydney Carton defends emigre Charles Darnay from charges of spying against England. He becomes enamored of Darnay's fiancée, Lucie Manette, and agrees to help her save Darnay from the guillotine when he is captured by Revolutionaries in Paris. Written by Marg Baskin <marg@asd.raytheon.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Immortal Story of Love and Intrigue During French Revolution! See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 December 1935 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Charles Dickens' 'A Tale of Two Cities'  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (video)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The storming of the Bastille was actually directed by Val Lewton and Jacques Tourneur, a partnership that would later go on to make such horror classics as _Cat People_ and I Walked with a Zombie (1943). See more »

Goofs

Close up of a paper reporting arrest of Charles Darnay shows a Reuters report. The action takes place in 1785...Paul Reuter was born in 1816 and did not set up his eponymous news agency until 1850. See more »

Quotes

[after Darnay is acquitted, Jarvis Lorry, Jr. shakes his hand]
Jarvis Lorry Jr.: My boy, never for a moment did I doubt your innocence.
Sydney Carton: So, Mr. Lorry, respectable men of business may speak to Mr. Darnay in public, now he's acquitted.
Jarvis Lorry Jr.: You have mentioned that before, sir. We men of business must think of the house we serve more than ourselves.
Sydney Carton: Yes, yes. Banking, of course, imposes its own restrictions and silences.
Jarvis Lorry Jr.: And, indeed, sir, I don't know that it is any of your business.
Sydney Carton: Oh, bless you, I have no business.
Jarvis Lorry Jr.: ...
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in Spun Out: A Tale of Two Lasagnas (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Adeste Fideles
(1782) (uncredited)
Music by John Francis Wade (1782)
Arranged by David Snell
Latin lyrics traditional
Sung in church by an unseen female
English lyrics "Come, All Ye Faithful" by Frederick Oakeley (1852)
Sung by a group passing by
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Awesome!
11 June 2000 | by (Pofesional Ville) – See all my reviews

Magistral adaptation of Charles Dickens' classic novel set in the French Revolution. The story is very interesting in itself, but the way it is told elevates it to the cathegory of a masterpiece. The acting of the entire cast is great, from Ronald Colman (maybe the best of adventure heroes of the 1930s, while a little forgotten today) to Reginald Owen (seeing this film makes me want to check Mr. Owen's work as Ebenezer Scrooge in the 1938 movie 'A Christmas Carol'. I wish I could find a copy...), without forgetting Basil Rathbone (who has a brief but intense appearance as the tyrant Marquis) nor, of course, Blanche Yurka, an actress I hadn't even heard of before, and turns out to be the greatest in a cast of greats. Her speech in the court is one of the most moving scenes in film history.

I wouldn't like to finish without mentioning the masterful Bastille scene (directed by Val Lewton and Jacques Tourneur). That's what I call epic moviemaking. Unforgettable.

I've also seen other two versions of this story, the 1958 British movie with Dirk Bogarde and the 1980 TV remake with Chris Sarandon and Peter Cushing. They're OK, but this one is the best one by far, a silver screen classic I'm glad to own on videotape. A definite 10 out of 10.


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