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A housemaid falls in love with Dr. Jekyll and his darkly mysterious counterpart, Mr. Hyde.



(novel), (screenplay)
6 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
George Cole ...
Mary's Father
Kathy Staff ...
Mary's Mother
Sir Danvers Carew (as Ciaran Hinds)
Sasha Hanau ...
Moya Brady ...
Young Woman
Emma Griffiths Malin ...
Young Whore
David Ross ...


We are somewhere in England in the 19th century. A Pretty housemaid works in a nice house, which is Dr. Jekyll's house. Mary Reilly think she found her best job, because she is poor and the doctor is well-known and rich. The film tells the 'Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde' story as a woman sees the two men, one of them is good and the other is evil. And she loves them ... Written by Kornel Osvart <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Evil loves innocence. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for notable gore and some strong violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

23 February 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El secreto de Mary Reilly  »

Box Office


$47,000,000 (estimated)


$5,600,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(8 channels)|



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Some of the indoor sets used were sections of real homes preserved from the Victorian era. See more »


Mary's accent disappears & reappears several times during the film. See more »


[first lines]
Dr. Henry Jekyll: I'm not going to bite you.
Mary Reilly: I'm sorry, sir, you gave me a fright.
Dr. Henry Jekyll: You're up very early.
Mary Reilly: I'm generally up by five, sir, otherwise I get behind.
See more »


Version of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1968) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

This film gets better as you watch it
28 February 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Initially, I stayed away from this movie as it received merciless reviews. The fact that Julia Roberts was in it also was another obstacle. Yet as other reviewers have mentioned, she actually gives a good performance. John Malkovich is excellent as the tormented Jekyll/Hyde character.

The cinematography and moods are haunting. One feels they are actually re-living the Victorian era, where the servants woke up at 4AM to complete their drudgery. The kitchen conjures up the stark realities of survival, the eel that is chopped up for dinner (while alive) Mary Reilly turns white as a sheet as she sees the animal die. I actually began to appreciate Ms. Roberts' performances more after this film (also in films like "Mona Lisa Smile", she projects a certain believability; is not just a physical presence). At one point, there is a most effective scene wherein Roberts must see to her mother's burial, and goes to the tenement to make arrangements. The landlord has placed her mother's body in a damp cellar closet, saying she is "most comfortable" as he hands her one shilling, the only money Roberts will inherit. Roberts then says; ..."ä poor wage for a lifetime of drudgery"... We are reminded of the workhouses of Dickens, and the rigid class structures which she must survive...

While the dialect is at times choppy, she is believable as an Irish maid; and the supporting cast also lends credence to this story. Malkovich varies his performance between Jekyll/Hyde, and it is effective and visceral.

If you initially avoided this film, I would highly recommend seeing it now. The atmosphere and music are haunting and sad. 9/10

17 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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