Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931)

“My analysis of this soul , the human psyche, leads me to believe that man is not truly one – but, truly two. One of him strives for the nobilities of life. This we call his good self. The other, seeks an expression of impulses that bind him to some dim animal relation with the earth. This – we may call the bad. These two carry out an eternal struggle in the nature of man. Yet, they are chained together – and that chain spells repression to the evil, remorse to the good. Now, if these two selves could be separated from each other, how much freer the good in us would be? What heights it might scale? And the so-called evil, once liberated, would fulfill itself and trouble us no more. I believe the day is not far off, when this separation will be possible. ” – Dr. Jekyll

Number of Times Seen – 1 (19 Jun 2018)

Brief Synopsis – A scientist finds a way to try and separate the good personality from the bad but inadvertently turns himself into a monster.

My Take on it – This is a film that I heard about years ago, but never got around to seeing it.

March is superb in this film because he is allowed to show his amazing acting range since both characters that he plays are so diverse in their attitudes and the way they act throughout.

The special effects used in this film are spectacular especially given the fact that this film was made nearly 90 years ago.

The fact that some of the techniques used were so unique and innovative at the time is amazing especially given the fact that some of the “tricks” were only revealed decades later which says so much about the ingenuity of this film.

March is superb here and was very deserving of his first (of two career) Oscars for this role.

This was a very controversial year at the Oscars, because it was the very first time that there was a virtual tie in an acting category.

The silliness of it all is that March got one vote more than his nearest competitor yet due to the rules of the Oscars at the time, that was still deemed a tie.

The film still works really well even after so many years and I’m so happy that I finally got to see this spectacular movie.

Bottom Line – March is superb in this film because he gets to show his range as an actor due to the diverse attitudes of his two characters. The special effects used for this film were quite unique and innovative for its time and the fact that some of the techniques used were only revealed decades later says so much about this process. March deserving won an Oscar for Best Actor for this role and unfortunately due to silly Academy rules had to share the win with someone who got one less vote than he did. This film still works really well even after so many years and I’m so glad I finally got to see it! Highly Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – The remarkable Jekyll-to-Hyde transition scenes in this film were accomplished by manipulating a series of variously colored filters in front of the camera lens. Fredric March’s Hyde makeup was in various colors, and the way his appearance registered on the film depended on which color filter was being shot through. During the first transformation scene, the accompanying noises on the soundtrack included portions of Bach, a gong being played backwards, and, reportedly, a recording of director Rouben Mamoulian’s own heart. Only in the late 1960’s did Mamoulian reveal how they were done.  (From IMDB)

Rating – Oscar Worthy (9/10)


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3 thoughts on “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931)

  1. Pingback: MovieRob Monthly Roundup – June 2018 |

  2. Pingback: Oscar Best Acting Winners |

  3. Pingback: Did They Get it Right? – Best Picture – Oscars 1932 |

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