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Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Joe Macclesfield » August 21st, 2014, 8:40 pm

jdb1, I agree with you when you say that "I think we generally tune such things out, especially when watching the older films". I also share your opinion of Fredric March's performances in general. The simian makeup applied to March, in Mamoulian's version of the tale, is ludicrously over the top, and even comic. The '31 picture has some startling effects for it's time. Some parts of the script flow better than the later version. And, while I stated in an earlier post that the March version is the better film, I meant that in a cinematic sense. I personally prefer the Tracy picture. Reasons: The beautifully authentic period look and feel (even if everything does look a bit TOO pristine). Tracy gives an excellent performance as Jekyll. He isn't as comfortable as Hyde, but acquits himself well. Ian Hunter makes a convincing friend to Jekyll (Holmes Herbert, in the '31 version, looks old enough to be March's father!). Halliwell Hobbes is no match for Donald Crisp, nor Miriam Hopkins for Ingrid Bergman! There we have it.
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

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jdb1
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Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby jdb1 » August 21st, 2014, 9:50 pm

I've always sensed in Tracy's Hyde a hint of reluctance in pursuing his degeneracies. Sort of like the dismay of Lon Chaney's Larry Talbot at the prospect of being a werewolf. This may be due to Tracy's discomfit with digging into such a character, but there's a desperation in his Mr. Hyde that isn't just because he had a lotta evil livin' to do. In some subliminal way, you know he's going to revert to the good guy in the end.

You know, although I find the later Jerry Lewis very hard to take in large increments, I like his Dr. Hyde turn. It seems very real to me; I've met far too many men just like him in NYC. Unfortunately, not many of those Hydes had any sort of Dr. Jekyll side. At least all these movies have some balance.

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jdb1
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Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby jdb1 » August 21st, 2014, 9:53 pm

Zounds! Lost my avatar.

There it is again. Stay with us, Stan.

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Lucky Vassall
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Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Lucky Vassall » August 21st, 2014, 10:02 pm

There sure have been a lot of actors who tried to live up to the character, with varying success. The problem for most seems to be that they're thought of as too nice for Hyde or too sinister for Jekyll It's really a part you can sink your teeth into. (Oops, wrong monster!)

I' greatly enjoyed Mary Reilly, simply because it took a classic and traveled in a very different direction to tell the story. Would like to see more liberties taken with the classics. (I think!)
AVATAR: Billy DeWolfe as Mrs. Murgatroid, “Blue Skies” (1946)

“My ancestors came over on the Mayflower.”
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Mae West, The Heat’s On” (1943)

:–)—
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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Joe Macclesfield » August 22nd, 2014, 10:40 am

"Climax" Dr. J & Mr. H (Michael Rennie). Yes-sir! Thanks W.G. I don't have my own PC, but that's a treat I'm looking forward to on Monday. Who'd have thought that that would still be around!
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
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Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Western Guy » August 22nd, 2014, 11:42 am

Glad to oblige, Joe. It's amazing some of the stuff you can pick up on YouTube. Michael Rennie, as Hyde, certainly presents a sinister character. A far cry from the benevolent Klaatu.

Hope you enjoy!

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Joe Macclesfield » August 29th, 2014, 5:33 pm

One last word about Dr. J. And Mr. H., and a question: Last night, I re-read Stevenson's original yarn (first time since I was at school). I've never seen so many semi-colons! The idea that Hyde is of a smaller stature than Jekyll just seems daft. The bit about him being caught short (in a manner of speaking) while out, and finding his clothes too big, is just too comical to be taken seriously! Now, a matter of pronunciation. "Jeekyll" or "Jekyll". Which do you prefer?
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
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Joined: March 26th, 2012, 1:19 pm
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Western Guy » August 29th, 2014, 6:40 pm

I concede that the Fredric March version is my favorite of the Jekyll/Hyde films . . . except for the pronunciation of "Jeekyl." Somehow just doesn't seem right to me. Kinda like how in the Hammer films the name is pronounced Frankenshtein."

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Joe Macclesfield » August 29th, 2014, 7:53 pm

I like the way Bela Lugosi pronounced the name: "Frank'n'SHtein"
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
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Joined: March 26th, 2012, 1:19 pm
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Western Guy » August 29th, 2014, 7:55 pm

Well . . . I don't think Bela could have pronounced it any other way.

And least not with those dentures.

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Joe Macclesfield » August 29th, 2014, 8:13 pm

Incidently, I've long suspected that when the monster speaks with Ygor's voice, at the conclusion of GHOST OF FRANKENSTEIN, it could be Chaney doing a Lugosi impersonation. Listen, see what you think.
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
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Joined: March 26th, 2012, 1:19 pm
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Western Guy » August 29th, 2014, 8:20 pm

According to Greg Mank's excellent "Karloff and Lugosi: A Haunting Collaboration" (or "Lugosi and Karloff", depending on which version you prefer), it was definitely Bela speaking (recording) those lines that Chaney's monster mouths. Actually, with Chaney's usual monotone vocals I can't even picture him duplicating Lugosi's unique Hungarian dialect.

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Rita Hayworth
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Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Rita Hayworth » August 29th, 2014, 10:00 pm

Joe Macclesfield wrote: Now, a matter of pronunciation. "Jeekyll" or "Jekyll". Which do you prefer?



Jeekyll ... too weird!

Jekylll ... just perfect!


There's my 2 cents thrown in ...

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Joe Macclesfield
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Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Joe Macclesfield » August 29th, 2014, 11:25 pm

Very probably so W.G., but then Greg Mank did think that Robert Donat's name was "Robert Donut" (yes, I'm a bugger for accents)! One final "last" word from me on the Tracy picture (and the subject as a whole). One of my favourite scenes. Jekyll enters the beautiful M.G.M. recreation of a Victorian park, and shares a word or two with "Mr. Weller", the park attendant (played by the great Billy Bevan): "Mr. Weller, here's a point..."
"...Then as a bee, which among weeds doth fall,
Which seem sweet floures with lustre fresh and gay,
She lights on that, and this, and tasteth all,
But pleasd with none doth rise and sore away..."

Western Guy
Posts: 1702
Joined: March 26th, 2012, 1:19 pm
Location: Winnipeg, Canada

Re: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941)

Postby Western Guy » August 30th, 2014, 1:32 am

Hope that was just a misprint that was missed in editing, Joe. Mank's other research seemed impeccable. Would hate to think Robert "Donut" was a deliberate flub.


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