Baron Frankenstein is once again working with illegal medical experiments. Together with a young doctor, Karl and his fiancée Anna, they kidnap the mentally sick Dr. Brandt, to perform the ... See full summary »
In Serbia, Baron Frankenstein lives with the Baroness and their two children. He dreams of a super-race, returning Serbia to its grand connections to ancient Greece. In his laboratory, ... See full summary »
Dalila Di Lazzaro
A dead and frozen Baron Frankenstein is re-animated by his colleague Dr. Hertz proving to him that the soul does not leave the body on the instant of death. His lab assistant, young Hans, ... See full summary »
Dr. Bernard Adrian is a kindly mad scientist who seeks to cure a young woman's polio. He needs spinal fluid from a human to complete the formula for his experimental serum. Meanwhile, a ... See full summary »
Dr. Jekyll believes good and evil exist in everyone. Experiments reveal his evil side, named Hyde. Experience teaches him how evil Hyde can be: he kills Ivy who earlier expressed interest in Jekyll and Sir Charles, Jekyll's faincee's father. Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
It was probably too soon for Spencer Tracy to have tried a remake of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Ten years was not long enough for people to forget Fredric March's Oscar winning performance from the Paramount classic of 1931. This version of the Robert Louis Stevenson horror novel drew for Tracy some of the few bad reviews he ever got as a player because it was too soon. Time has been good to this film and we can see the differences in interpretation.
The Jekyll character that Tracy creates is a soft spoken guy, a lot like Father Flannagan. He's a medical doctor, more interested in research than in a practice. Before Sigmund Freud ever coined the terms ego and id to describe man's duel nature of good and evil, Stevenson had those same notions about man's behavior and incorporated them in his novel.
The Hyde character was a bold experiment. Tracy was probably the player in Hollywood who disliked makeup the most. Yet for this film and for few others, he allowed himself to be made up ever so slightly to suggest the evil Hyde. It was a far cry from the simian appearance of Fredric March's Hyde and Tracy got criticized for it. Retrospectives now are kinder to him and his method of interpretation.
Stepping into the female roles played by Rose Hobart and Miriam Hopkins in the March version are Lana Turner and Ingrid Bergman. Lana Turner although later she played quite a few sexpots was at this stage of her career playing very winsome proper young ladies and not doing a bad job of it.
Ingrid Bergman plays Champagne Ivy, probably one of the most luckless characters in fiction. Ivy was not in the original novel, she was in the play that was adapted from the Stevenson novel and she's come down to us ever since. This poor girl, no better than she ought to be meets Tracy as Jekyll and he's attracted, but engaged to Turner. When he becomes Hyde, the beast within him remembers and stalks Bergman mercilessly ending in tragedy all around.
Besides March and Tracy other actors who've tried this most difficult of parts are John Barrymore, Jack Palance, and Kirk Douglas. Only the best can and are willing to tackle Jekyll and Hyde. And there ain't no doubt that Tracy is one of the best.
20 of 25 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?