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Rembrandt (1936)

Not Rated | | Biography, Drama | 25 December 1936 (USA)
This character study joins the painter at the height of his fame in 1642, when his adored wife suddenly dies and his work takes a dark, sardonic turn that offends his patrons. By 1656, he ... See full summary »

Director:

Alexander Korda

Writers:

Carl Zuckmayer (film play), June Head (scenario)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Charles Laughton ... Rembrandt van Rijn
Gertrude Lawrence ... Geertje Dirx
Elsa Lanchester ... Hendrickje Stoffels
Edward Chapman ... Fabrizius
Walter Hudd ... Banning Cocq
Roger Livesey ... Beggar Saul
John Bryning John Bryning ... Titus
Sam Livesey ... Auctioneer
Herbert Lomas Herbert Lomas ... Gerrit van Rijn - Rembrandt's Father
Allan Jeayes Allan Jeayes ... Doctor Tulp
John Clements John Clements ... Flinck
Raymond Huntley ... Ludwick
Abraham Sofaer ... Menasseh
Lawrence Hanray Lawrence Hanray ... Heertsbeeke
Austin Trevor ... Marquis de Grand Coeur
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Storyline

This character study joins the painter at the height of his fame in 1642, when his adored wife suddenly dies and his work takes a dark, sardonic turn that offends his patrons. By 1656, he is bankrupt but consoles himself with the company of pretty maid Hendrickje, whom he's unable to marry. Their relationship brings ostracism but also some measure of happiness. The final scenes find him in his last year, 1669, physically enfeebled but his spirit undimmed. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Give Me a Beautiful Woman ! and I will make men worship and gaze upon her forever ... One mad moment of love brought him a lifetime of fear !!!! See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 December 1936 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Büyük Ates-Rembrandt See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System Noiseless Wide Range Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Televised as early as 11 July 1948 on WTMJ (Channel 3) in Milwaukee. See more »

Goofs

When Rembrandt reveals the newly completed painting, 'The Night Watch', we see not the full, original version that he in fact painted, but the drastically butchered version that was made over 40 years after his death, when the painting was moved from its original exhibition space in the Kloveniersdoelen to a less capacious display space in the Amsterdam Town Hall in 1715. See more »

Quotes

Rembrandt van Rijn: And of a sudden he knew that when one woman gives herself to you, you possess all women. Women of every age and race and kind, and more than that, the moon, the stars, all miracles and legends are yours. Brown-skinned girls who inflame your senses with their play, cool yellow-haired women who entice and escape you, gentle ones who serve you, slender ones who torment you, the mothers who bore and suckled you; all women whom God created out of the teeming fullness of the earth, are yours in the ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: In the seventeenth century Holland was a world power, her ships carried treasure to Amsterdam from all parts of the earth. But her proudest glory was the son of a miller from Leyden, Rembrandt Van Rijn, the greatest painter that has ever lived. He died in obscurity, his belongings no more than a few shillings.

Today no millionaire is worth the money the works of Rembrandt would realise, if ever offered for sale. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Star! (1968) See more »

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User Reviews

 
brilliant performance by Charles Laughton
28 April 2011 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Charles Laughton is "Rembrandt" in this 1936 film he made for Alexander Korda, one of three films he made in England during this time.

The story takes us through Rembrandt's sad life, and manages at the same time to leave out a lot of sadness. The film shows his son Titus, but there were several other children who did not survive. The great tragedy of Rembrandt's life was the death of his wife Saskia, whom he painted often. Rembrandt was also known for asking Jews to pose for his Old Testament paintings, which are informed by his knowledge of the Bible.

There were two other women in Rembrandt's life: his common-law wife Hendrickje Stoffels (Elsa Lanchester) and his housekeeper, Geertje Dirx (Gertrude Lawrence) who evidently became his lover. She later sued Rembrandt for breach of promise, and he had to pay her 200 guilders a month. For years he tried to get her committed.

Rembrandt is shown falling into poverty here. When his fortunes dimmed as an artist, he continued to work as a teacher. Bad investments were the main cause of his problems. In truth, his paintings remained popular throughout his lifetime, and the one for which he is chastised in the film actually was a huge hit.

Laughton portrays Rembrandt as a man of tremendous artistic integrity, a learned man with soul, heart, and a great feeling for language. Indeed, Laughton's monologues are absolutely beautiful; had he read the phone book, I would have been just as enraptured. Elsa Lanchester is very young here, all eyes, and gives a very sweet performance as the frail Hendrickje. Gertrude Lawrence is an absolute spitfire as Geertje.

Wonderful film. Don't miss this breathtaking Laughton performance.


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