A Tale of Two Cities (1958)

  |  Drama, History, Romance

A Tale of Two Cities (1958) Poster

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


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30 May 2008 | Rozinda
| Marvellous movie of one of the great books
This is my favourite Dickens book and my favourite Dickens dramatisation. I remember reading that there had been some doubts originally whether Dirk Bogarde matinée idol could manage this part. Instead it was presumably his first chance to show the inimitable quality of his acting. He is perfect in this part and I cannot imagine anyone else ever doing it better although I'd guess Ronald Coleman could equal it. I've seen one other, more recent version and although Carton's actor had a good go at it, it totally lacked the amazing charisma Bogarde provided for what is one of Dickens' most poignant characters - flawed, fascinating, cynical, damaged but wonderful.

It's a crying shame this wasn't filmed in colour since the producers did consider doing so and then didn't. But the production and acting are so excellent that you soon don't notice it isn't colour as you become completely immersed in the movie. I suppose it's always possible the lack of colour actually enhances the drama, and for me this story is the most dramatic and poignant of all Dickens - a work of pure genius.

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