A Tale Of Two Cities Review

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A lovestruck English barrister becomes entangled in the French Revolution.


Forever overshadowed by David Lean's two great takes on Dickens, Great Expectations (1946) and Oliver Twist (1948), this reasonably faithful British effort is perhaps not quite as dashing a take on the novel as Jack Conway's 1935 Hollywood version starring Ronald Colman. But it gives Dirk Bogarde the chance to prove he was more than just a matinee idol from the Doctor series. Here he's suitably disillusioned, then dignified, as lawyer Sidney Carton, caught up in the French Revolution. This adaptation is also notable also for villainous turns from horror icons Donald Pleasance and a pre-Dracula Christopher Lee.

A stately, well-played adaptation, if nothing else.