This listing is for Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde VHS Spencer Tracy, Ingrid Bergman.
Actors: Spencer Tracy, Ingrid Bergman, Lana Turner, Donald Crisp, Ian Hunter
Directors: Victor Fleming
Writers: John Lee Mahin, Paul Osborn, Percy Heath, Robert Louis Stevenson, Samuel Hoffenstein
Producers: Victor Fleming, Victor Saville
Format: Black & White, NTSC
Rated: G - General Audience
Number of tapes: 1
Studio: Warner Home Video
VHS Release Date: October 23, 1991
Run Time: 113 minutes
Classy MGM was not the studio most likely to make a horror movie in 1941, and in fact its production of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde ended up looking more like a glossy costume drama than a B-movie frightfest. The mood of Robert Louis Stevenson's tale of a divided doctor is ably captured in Joseph Ruttenberg's Oscar-nominated cinematography--more so, perhaps, than in Spencer Tracy's lead performance. Tracy wasn't especially happy about playing the role, although his transformations from good Dr. Jekyll to evil Dr. Hyde are convincing enough. One of the main reasons to see this version of the story is the young, impossibly beautiful Ingrid Bergman, then still a year shy of Casablanca. Bergman was cast in the good-girl part, but proved a shrewd judge of material, even this early in her Hollywood career; she finagled her way into playing the floozy instead, thus securing a more colorful acting platform than Lana Turner, who ended up in the more respectable role. Director Victor Fleming's previous movie was a little number called Gone with the Wind, and the Big Picture approach to that project may have influenced his work here--this Dr. Jekyll is just a bit too stately, too polished to really engage. The picture is so dignified it never cuts loose with the kind of wild invention that marked the 1932 version of the story, which won Fredric March an Oscar. It's the tale as imagined by Jekyll, rather than Hyde.
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