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A Tale of Two Cities

A Tale of Two Cities

A Tale of Two Cities is a 1935 film based upon Charles Dickens' 1859 historical novel, A Tale of Two Cities, set in London and Paris. The film stars Ronald Colman as Sydney Carton, Donald Woods and Elizabeth Allan. The supporting players include Reginald Owen, Basil Rathbone, Claude Gillingwater, Edna May Oliver and Blanche Yurka. It was directed by Jack Conway from a screenplay by W. P. Lipscomb and S. N. Behrman. The film was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture and Best Film Editing.

Plot

The film opens with a portion of the famed introduction to the novel: “ It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us... In short, it was a period very like the present...” Lucie Manette (Elizabeth Allan) and her servant and companion Miss Pross (Edna May Oliver) are informed by banker Mr. Jarvis Lorry (Claude Gillingwater) that her father, Dr. Alexandre Mannette (Henry B. Walthall) is not dead, but has been a prisoner in the Bastille for eighteen years before finally being rescued. She travels with Mr. Lorry to Paris to take her father to her home in England. Dr. Manette has been cared for by a former servant, Ernest De Farge (Mitchell Lewis), and his wife (Blanche Yurka). The old man's mind has given way during his long ordeal, but Lucie's tender care begins to restore his sanity.