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Edna May Oliver
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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 <email@example.com>
Sydney Carton attends Christmas Eve services ca. 1780 during which "Hark, the Herald Angels Sing" is sung to music by Felix Mendelssohn (1809-1847), and John Francis Wade's Latin hymn, "Adeste fideles," is sung in Frederick Oakley's (1802-1880) translation as "O Come, All Ye Faithful." See more »
Knitting woman (tricoteuse):
[the guilloutine strikes once more]
I lost a stitch. Cursed Aristocrats!
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Charles Dickens would have stood up and applauded had he seen this fabulous 1935 version of his classic tale.
There are no words adequate enough to praise the fine performances in this film dealing with the French Revolution.
Ronald Colman is memorable as Sidney Carton, an alcoholic lawyer, who gave up his life to save the husband (Donald Woods) of the woman he loved. The woman, played by Elizabeth Allan, was strong in emotion and very appealing.
The supporting performances are first-rate. Had they had supporting Oscar categories in 1935, Edna May Oliver, as Miss Pross, governess to Allan and Blanche Yurka, as fiery revolutionary Madame De Farge, would have certainly been nominated. Who can forget the fight scene between both of these women? Who can forget De Farge's demand that Darnay, the nephew of the notorious Marquis Evremonde, a vicious Basil Rathbone, be put to death for being a member of this elitist family? Yurka tore into this scene a revenge rarely seen in motion pictures. Unfortunately, Hollywood could offer her few parts for a talent as great as this. Oliver, as Miss Pross, shed the right tears, and with sarcastic wit, delivered some of the most memorable lines in this film. Her facial gestures along with those of Yurka were something else. You'd also feel for the mobs of the starving French while the aristocrats lived so well.
Isabel Jewell, as the condemned seamstress, gave heart in her brief performance. Her emotional outburst, as she nears her fate, will never be forgotten.
The dialogue was crisp, the directing by Jack Conway, was first rate.
Years later, this classic was remade in 1958. It was an extremely poor remake. Foolishly, they weakened the part of Madame De Farge. **** for the original and even more. Revolutions were never as good as this one!
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