Based on the story by Robert Louis Stevenson, Dr. Henry Jekyll believes that there are two distinct sides to men - a good and an evil side. He believes that by separating the two man can become liberated. He succeeds in his experiments with chemicals to accomplish this and transforms into Hyde to commit horrendous crimes. When he discontinues use of the drug it is already too late...Written by
Mark J. Popp <firstname.lastname@example.org>
35 historically-accurate studio sets were built for the movie. See more »
During Hyde's first visit to the Variety Music Hall, he reaches over the railing to trip a waiter with his cane. As he lurches around to grab his cane, he knocks his top hat off the railing and it lands on the floor next to the waiter. In the next shot, Hyde is holding onto the hat as he lashes out with his cane. See more »
You are pretty. And what a figure, my dear. What a figure! Glass of champagne. To you. To you, my dear. To your beauty.
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Originally released at 97 minutes. Later reissues are taken from a shortened 82-minutes print. Deletions include:
A 3.5 minute segment immediately following the opening credits. This is filmed in first person, and shows Jekyll playing the organ and getting ready for his lecture.
Jekyll helping a young girl to learn to walk in the free ward. This 1 minute scene precedes the scene with the sick woman in bed.
After his first transformation, Jekyll does not go immediately to the pub as in the cut version. Instead, Poole comes to the laboratory, and Jekyll takes the antidote and then lets him in. Jekyll then visits Muriel and learns that she is going away on a trip. Jekyll is preoccupied with her absence. When he learns she will be away another month, Poole suggests he go out. Jekyll knows a man of his position cannot be seen in the establishments of the lower classes, so he decides to take the potion again. Another on screen transformation occurs, this time while he is seated in a chair. He then leaves for the pub at which Ivy is singing. This sequence lasts 6.5 minutes.
Just before Jekyll's transformation in the park, the restored scene reveals the reason for his transformation without taking the potion. He sees a bird being killed by a cat up in a tree. The traces of the drug in him, combined with the witnessing of this violent act, is enough to trigger the transformation, which he now has no control over. This restored cut lasts 45 seconds.
The last restored scene is when Jekyll visits Muriel to "set her free". This adds additional details as to the torment Jekyll is going through, and confusion of Muriel as to what is troubling Jekyll.
A neglected masterpiece. When I picked up the two sided DVD I was excited because the Fleming/Tracy version is on the order of a guilty pleasure. But I soon realized that I had never seen the 1931 version. This is a film that lingers in the memories of many film goers as still photographs of Frederic March in his makeup. Watching it was a revelation. The same changes to original content - Jekyl's bride-to-be and her family - continue to wear wearily on the production, but nothing could prepare me for March's work. As often as we've seen "transformations" - this one is the BEST. Then young lion director Rouben Mamouilan pulls out some dandy tricks. And the sexually charged atmosphere before the Hayes code - was well - sexy as hell. Do yourself a favor and watch it.
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