Though most of us will never have to face horrors featured in so many scary films – well, I really hope so.. - there is one “horror” each and every one has to deal with – some will have problems when they have to face it themselves – others when their love ones are affected: Mortality.
And that’s the theme of the film I am going to present today – based on the book by my adored Oscar Wilde:
The Picture of Dorian Gray (1945)
Victorian London: Dandy Dorian Gray (Hurd Hatfield) has his portrait taken by artist Basil Hallward (Lowell Gilmore) - and wishes for immortal youth and beauty.
When he later notices that his wish came true and all the wickedness he does is not affecting his looks but those of his portrait there is no more self-effacement for him – unwittingly encouraged by cynical friend Lord Henry Wotton (George Sanders).
But after some years Dorian plans to marry Basil’s niece Gladys (Donna Reed) and when Basil wants to re-visit his masterpiece – soon there will be blood dripping of the hand of the pictured Dorian Gray..
Wonderfully done –I especially love Angela Lansbury’s performance as sweet Sybil Vane – she looks of course gorgeous – her acting is just wonderful. Oh, and Peter Lawford is in this film, too.. And I am happy that they took some of the witty Oscar Wilde lines from the book - so you might catch some nice phrases to show your friends how witty/intellectual (based on the knowledge of your audience..) you are..
As a nice gimmick in my opinion the whole film is done in b/w – just the famous picture is shown in Technicolor. Very effective, I must say!
This might not be your classical monster film (anyway – seems like I am here for doing the not so scary films, Monty – ain’t I? ...) – but as often quoted in this film - and maybe the motto of at least my life:
“I myself am heaven and hell.”
And I think that is not only true but from times to times quite scary..
..and so is growing old..
..excuse me now: I need moisturizer..