7.2/10
5,546
96 user 35 critic

Of Human Bondage (1934)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 20 July 1934 (USA)
A young man finds himself attracted to a cold and unfeeling waitress who may ultimately destroy them both.

Director:

John Cromwell

Writers:

Lester Cohen (screen play), W. Somerset Maugham (from the novel by)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Leslie Howard ... Philip Carey
Bette Davis ... Mildred Rogers
Frances Dee ... Sally Athelny
Kay Johnson ... Norah
Reginald Denny ... Harry Griffiths
Alan Hale ... Emil Miller
Reginald Sheffield Reginald Sheffield ... Cyril Dunsford
Reginald Owen ... Thorpe Athelny
Desmond Roberts ... Dr. Jacobs
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Charles Coleman ... (scenes deleted)
Frank Mills ... Chimneysweep (scenes deleted)
Pat Somerset ... (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

Abandoning artistic ambitions, sensitive and club-footed Philip Carey enrolls in medical school and falls in love with a waitress Mildred Rogers. She rejects him, runs off with a salesman and returns unmarried and pregnant. Philip gets her an apartment and they become engaged. Mildred runs off with another medical student. Philip takes her back again when she returns with her baby. She wrecks his apartment and burns the securities he needs to pay tuition. He gets a job as a salesman, has surgery on his foot, receives an inheritance, and returns to school where he learns Mildred is dying. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The greatest novel of the twentieth century now brings to the screen humanity's tortured heart-cry! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 July 1934 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Escravos do Desejo See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$403,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (R C A Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The first of three screen versions of W. Somerset Maugham's novel. See more »

Goofs

Athelny's mustache and beard are almost coming unstuck in the scene in which he is eating dinner. See more »

Quotes

Mildred Rogers: Good riddance to bad rubbish.
See more »

Connections

Version of Of Human Bondage (1964) See more »

Soundtracks

Hesitation Blues
(1915) (uncredited)
Written by Billy Smythe, Scott Middleton and Art Gillham
Played when Mildred is tearing up the apartment
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A True Classic
17 May 2005 | by tamstratSee all my reviews

This movie, even though it is over 70 years old is still a very moving, strong film. Bette Davis, as the slutty, vicious Cockney waitress Mildred is absolutely believable. Watching her performance is still spellbinding. She makes the viewer absolutely despise her and pity her at the same time. Leslie Howard's performance as the weak, obsessed Phillip Carey is not as strong, but I don't see how any actor could hold their own against Ms. Davis's performance. She chews up the scenery in every scene she is in, totally stealing the show. This is the movie that sealed her stardom and she deserved to win the Academy Award, but lost. It was shocking for it's day what with themes of unwed pregnancy, multiple sex partners, and Mildred's vicious language so it is somewhat dated, but still an excellent movie. Just to see the scene where Mildred tells Phillip what she REALLY thinks of him ("You cad, you dirty swine....") is still some of the greatest acting I have ever seen on film.


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