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The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945)

A corrupt young man somehow keeps his youthful beauty, but a special painting gradually reveals his inner ugliness to all.

Director:

Albert Lewin

Writers:

Albert Lewin (screen play), Oscar Wilde (based upon the novel by)
Reviews
Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
George Sanders ... Lord Henry Wotton
Hurd Hatfield ... Dorian Gray
Donna Reed ... Gladys Hallward
Angela Lansbury ... Sibyl Vane
Peter Lawford ... David Stone
Lowell Gilmore ... Basil Hallward
Richard Fraser ... James Vane
Douglas Walton ... Allen Campbell
Morton Lowry ... Adrian Singleton
Miles Mander ... Sir Robert Bentley
Lydia Bilbrook Lydia Bilbrook ... Mrs. Vane
Mary Forbes Mary Forbes ... Lady Agatha
Robert Greig ... Sir Thomas
Moyna MacGill ... Duchess
Billy Bevan ... Malvolio Jones - Chairman
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Storyline

In 1886, in the Victorian London, the corrupt Lord Henry Wotton meets the pure Dorian Gray posing for talented painter Basil Hallward. Basil paints Dorian's portrait and gives the beautiful painting and an Egyptian sculpture of a cat to him while Henry corrupts his mind and soul telling that Dorian should seek pleasure in life. Dorian wishes that his portrait could age instead of him. Dorian goes to a side show in the Two Turtles in the poor neighborhood of London and he falls in love with the singer Sibyl Vane. Dorian decides to get married with her and tells to Lord Henry that convinces him to test the honor of Sibyl. Dorian Gray leaves Sibyl and travels abroad and when he returns to London, Lord Henry tells him that Sibyl committed suicide for love. Along the years, Dorian's friends age while he is still the same, but his picture discloses his evilness and corruptive life. Can he still have salvation or is his soul trapped in the doomed painting? Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

His life was a muddy morass into which he dragged all who knew him! Such was Dorian Gray, the man who wanted eternal youth, and bartered his soul to get it! See more »


Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 March 1945 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Das Bildnis des Dorian Gray See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,500,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

Black and White | Color (Technicolor) (some sequences)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

When Lord Henry Wotton appears in the carriage at the beginning of the film, he is reading The Flowers of Evil / Les Fleurs du Mal by Charles Baudelaire. It is a collection of romantic poems that was first published in 1857. Some topics in those poems include recurring 19th century Romanticism themes such as despair, the woes of living, women and unrequited love. See more »

Goofs

An American version of a Brit Railway Station - Toward the end of the movie Dorian (Hatfield) and Henry Wotton (Sanders) arrive at Selby Station, Yorkshire, England. The train pulls into the "stationhouse" platform which is to the most right-hand side coming UP from London. That would be correct for an American RR Station but the absolute wrong side for Britain; the Brits both drive on the left-hand side of the road and also run their trains that way. See more »

Quotes

Lord Henry Wotton: "If I could get back my youth, I'd do anything in the world except get up early, take exercise or be respectable."
See more »

Alternate Versions

Older TV prints of "The Picture of Dorian Gray" ran entirely in black-and-white, and did not show the painting in colour. Most current TV broadcasts now show the proper colour inserts. According to some sources, the final shot of the film was also originally shown in colour, but all extant prints show the final shot in black-and-white. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Prelude in E, Op. 28 No. 4
(uncredited)
by Frédéric Chopin
Played by Lela Simone
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
An ingenious horror classic
17 December 2004 | by The_VoidSee all my reviews

Based on a story by Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray tells the story of a man that sells his soul for eternal youth. After having his portrait done, Dorian Gray, under the influence of the eloquent Lord Henry Wotton, wishes for the picture to age instead of him so that he may be blessed with eternal youth. After the death of his wife-to-be, Dorian embarks on a life of pleasure and sins, which don't affect the man in the slightest, but leaves it mark on the portrait which descends into a horrid impression of the handsome young man it's portraying...

This film is fantastically well put together. The acting, directing and writing are all stellar, which make this film one pleasant viewing indeed. The real plaudits for this movie, however, go to the writer of the original novel; Oscar Wilde. The story itself is ingenious. Of course, the idea of selling one's soul had been done before (the German legend, Faust, springs to mind instantly), but never in this way. The portrait itself is a genius idea and it allows us to see the man and the sin as different things. However, through it's ending; it also allows the audience to see that the two are linked, and overall giving a good commentary on body, soul and sin. The story has obvious themes of vanity and the lust for eternal youth entwined within it, both of which are sins in themselves. The main character of Dorian Gray is a man that is a victim of influence, and we can feel for him in that way; but he's also an ugly sinner on the inside, making the audience hate him. This is a strange situation for an audience to be in, and in the end; all that's left for him is indifference.

The film moves slowly, but this is definitely to it's advantage as it allows us to get to know the characters, and if it wasn't for that the horror wouldn't be able to work as it needs our emotional impact to function. The horror in the story is rather subdued, but this is one of the most horrific tales ever told. I think most people will agree that this kind of horror - the brooding, personal kind - is much more horrifying than anything that men with knives and any amount of jumpy moments can muster.


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