7.8/10
4,560
63 user 17 critic

A Tale of Two Cities (1935)

Not Rated | | Drama, History, Romance | 25 December 1935 (USA)
A pair of lookalikes, one a former French aristocrat and the other an alcoholic English lawyer, fall in love with the same woman amongst the turmoil of the French Revolution.

Directors:

Jack Conway, Robert Z. Leonard (uncredited)

Writers:

Charles Dickens (novel), W.P. Lipscomb (screen play) | 5 more credits »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

During the turbulent days of the French Revolution, Frenchwoman Lucie Manette falls in love with Englishman Charles Darnay, who's hiding his true identity and purpose.

Director: Ralph Thomas
Stars: Dirk Bogarde, Dorothy Tutin, Cecil Parker
A Tale of Two Cities (TV Movie 1980)
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

An ex-aristocrat from France and an alcoholic English lawyer find themselves crossing paths and in love with the same woman during the French Revolution.

Director: Jim Goddard
Stars: Chris Sarandon, Peter Cushing, Kenneth More
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

An Englishman on a Ruritarian holiday must impersonate the king when the rightful monarch, a distant cousin, is drugged and kidnapped.

Directors: John Cromwell, W.S. Van Dyke
Stars: Ronald Colman, Madeleine Carroll, C. Aubrey Smith
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A gentle orphan discovers life and love in an indifferent adult world.

Director: George Cukor
Stars: Freddie Bartholomew, Frank Lawton, Edna May Oliver
A Tale of Two Cities (TV Mini-Series 1989)
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Two men, one an aristocrat, and one a drunken lawyer, fall in love with the same woman during the early stages of the French Revolution.

Stars: James Wilby, Xavier Deluc, Serena Gordon
A Tale of Two Cities (TV Mini-Series 1980)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

During the turbulent days of the French Revolution, Frenchwoman Lucie Manette falls in love with Englishman Charles Darnay who's hiding his true identity and purpose.

Stars: Paul Shelley, Ralph Michael, Sally Osborne
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

An amnesiac World War I veteran falls in love with a music hall star, only to suffer an accident which restores his original memories but erases his post-war life.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Stars: Ronald Colman, Greer Garson, Philip Dorn
Lost Horizon (1937)
Adventure | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A plane crash delivers a group of people to the secluded land of Shangri-La - but is it the miraculous utopia it appears to be?

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Ronald Colman, Jane Wyatt, Edward Everett Horton
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Young love is poisoned by a generations long feud between two noble families.

Director: George Cukor
Stars: Norma Shearer, Leslie Howard, John Barrymore
A Double Life (1947)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Anthony John is an actor whose life is strongly influenced by the characters he plays. When he's playing comedy, he's the most enjoyable person in the world, but when he's playing drama, ... See full summary »

Director: George Cukor
Stars: Ronald Colman, Edmond O'Brien, Signe Hasso
Libeled Lady (1936)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A newspaper man, his ignored fiancée, and his former employee, a down on his luck reporter, hatch an elaborate scheme to turn a false news story into the truth in order to prevent a high-society woman from suing for libel.

Director: Jack Conway
Stars: Jean Harlow, William Powell, Myrna Loy
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Alcoholic lawyer Sydney Carton travels to Paris during the Reign of Terror to rescue French aristocrat Charles Darnay, husband of the woman he loves.

Director: Frank Lloyd
Stars: William Farnum, Jewel Carmen, Charles Clary
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ronald Colman ... Sydney Carton
Elizabeth Allan ... Lucie Manette
Edna May Oliver ... Miss Pross
Reginald Owen ... C.J. Stryver
Basil Rathbone ... Marquis St. Evrémonde
Blanche Yurka ... Madame Therese De Farge
Henry B. Walthall ... Dr. Manette
Donald Woods ... Charles Darnay
Walter Catlett ... Barsad
Fritz Leiber ... Gaspard
H.B. Warner ... Gabelle
Mitchell Lewis ... Ernest De Farge
Claude Gillingwater ... Jarvis Lorry Jr.
Billy Bevan ... Jerry Cruncher
Isabel Jewell ... Seamstress
Edit

Storyline

Alas, an aristocrat and a barrister on the same plateau. This is the story of a revolution, a revolution that occurred in France known as the Reign of Terror. The barrister, the town alcoholic and man of disrepute, is in love with a beautiful woman, who marries the aristocrat and bears a beautiful baby girl. The baby girl is infatuated with the barrister, and he her because of her mother. The ultimate sacrifice occurs and a man's soul goes forward.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The most dramatic love story in the history of literature! See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 December 1935 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Charles Dickens' 'A Tale of Two Cities' See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (video)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Strains of the Gregorian chant Missa Pro Defunctis Dies Irae appear in the prison scene when the aristocrats try to encourage each other to go bravely to their deaths. See more »

Goofs

When Carton walks Lucie & Miss Pross home after midnight Christmas mass, there is "snow" covering Lucie's hat. When she turns in the doorway, her hat has none on it. See more »

Quotes

[Madame DeFarge has come looking for Lucie and the child. Miss Pross bars her way out]
Miss Pross: Oh no you don't!
Madame Defarge: Let me pass.
Miss Pross: Never! I know what you want. I know what you're after. And thank heaven I'm put here to stop you - for stop you I will!
Madame Defarge: In the name of the Republic...
Miss Pross: In the name of no one, you evil woman. You've killed many innocent people. No doubt you'll kill many more; but my ladybird you shall never touch.
Madame Defarge: No? Do you know who I am?
Miss Pross: You might - from your appearance - be the wife of Lucifer; ...
[...]
See more »


Soundtracks

Egmont Overture, Op. 84
(1809-10) (uncredited)
Written by Ludwig van Beethoven
Freely arranged by Herbert Stothart
Played as background music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The best Hollywood Dickens
26 March 2011 | by st-shotSee all my reviews

With the exception of David Copperfield this is probably Hollywood's most accomplished treatment of a Charles Dickens work. Sumptuously mounted and produced in grand MGM style it has the the perfect voice and charm of Ronald Colman as Sidney Carton, a stalwart supporting cast and magnificently choreographed large scale crowd scenes depicting the out of control energy and fury of the revolt and subsequent reign of terror.

Colman's charming cynic wins us over early given he is surrounded by just cause with a Dicken's roster of pompous bores and hypocrites caught up in their own self importance. He drinks and offends but who can blame him. The sardonic wit of the film extends beyond Carton though by way of Dickens "cinematic" descriptive style that sharply conveys through both character and setting distracting dark humor over the grim proceedings by intermingling comic portraits with the sober cruel personages while making incisive social commentary. A laudable supporting cast consisting of Reginald Owen, Edna May Oliver, Billy Bevan, Blanche Yurka's Madame DeFarge and Basil Rathbone's venal Marquis de Evermonde truly do bring the pages to life, though I will admit an Oliver, Yurka death match near the end does take liberties with the tome.

Oliver Marsh's photography is commendable throughout whether conveying panorama in the excellently edited storming of the Bastille and raucous courtroom scenes or the tight tension filled cramped ominously lit interiors of cells or the De Farge wine shop.

With Colman in the lead and every MGM department clicking on all cylinders Tale of Two Cities remains fresh and vital 75 years later. It is one of those rear films that embraces rather than wrestle with a classic literary work which it does here with grandeur and confidence.


8 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 63 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

IMDb Freedive: Watch Movies and TV Series for Free

Watch Hollywood hits and TV favorites for free with IMDb Freedive. Start streaming on IMDb and Fire TV devices today!

Start watching

Stream Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed