Dodsworth

Overview

In this highly acclaimed adaptation of Sinclair Lewis's novel, Walter Huston plays Sam Dodsworth, a good-hearted, middle-aged man who runs an auto manufacturing firm. His wife Fran Ruth Chatterton is obsessed with the notion that she's growing old, and she eventually persuades Sam to sell his interest in the company and take her to Europe. He agrees for the sake of their marriage, but before long Fran has begun to think of herself as a cosmopolitan sophisticate and thinks of Sam as dull and unadventurous. Craving...
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Overview

In this highly acclaimed adaptation of Sinclair Lewis's novel, Walter Huston plays Sam Dodsworth, a good-hearted, middle-aged man who runs an auto manufacturing firm. His wife Fran Ruth Chatterton is obsessed with the notion that she's growing old, and she eventually persuades Sam to sell his interest in the company and take her to Europe. He agrees for the sake of their marriage, but before long Fran has begun to think of herself as a cosmopolitan sophisticate and thinks of Sam as dull and unadventurous. Craving excitement, Fran begins spending her time with other men and eventually informs Sam that she's leaving him for a minor member of royalty. While in Italy, Sam runs into Edith Cortright Mary Astor, an attractive widow whom he first met while sailing to Europe. Edith seems to understand Sam in a way his wife does not, and they fall in love. However, Sam impulsively breaks off their relationship, only to discover in her absence just how deeply he cares for her. Dodsworth was nominated for seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor Walter Huston, and Best Supporting Actress Maria Ouspenskaya, though only art director Richard Day walked away with an Oscar.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Bruce Eder
William Wyler's Dodsworth was one of the most mature and adult film dramas of its day, with its interlocking stories of two halves of a marriage turning bad, as the partners realize that they have aged and changed. That it made it to the screen intact was something of a triumph for producer Samuel Goldwyn, director Wyler, and screenwriter Sidney Howard, adapting his own play, based on Sinclair Lewis's novel. In 1936, with the Production Code restricting the kinds of stories one could tell on screen, it was not a time for movies to depict marital infidelities, especially those in which parties are not made to suffer. The beauty of Dodsworth, apart from Academy Award-caliber performances by Walter Huston and Ruth Chatterton, is that it tells its story so frankly and effortlessly that the viewer realizes only halfway through that s/he's watching the break-up of a family brought about by the vanity of one member. Ruth Chatterton's Fran Dodsworth has not aged gracefully; she's found nothing to love in her life now that her husband Sam (Huston) is retired and a lot to fear, including the fact that she is older, and a grandmother by the movie's end. Huston's Sam Dodsworth is unfulfilled by business success, but he has a firm enough grasp on who he is to face starting over in late middle age as a new adventure. Thus, she thrusts herself at every young man that she thinks attractive, in a desperate quest to hold onto her youth, while he drifts awkwardly and guiltily into a relationship with a woman like himself (Mary Astor), and the crosscurrents of their disintegrating marriage keep us riveted to the screen for 100 minutes. It was movies like this that Hollywood had in mind, but almost never achieved, when it started adapting Broadway dramas to the screen. Dodsworth never made the kind of money that Goldwyn hoped it might--it was too serious and demanding a drama for audiences in 1936--but it has held up better than almost any other drama from that decade.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 12/11/2001
  • UPC: 883904126607
  • Original Release: 1936
  • Source: Mgm (Video & Dvd)
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Walter Huston Sam Dodsworth
Ruth Chatterton Fran Dodsworth
Paul Lukas Arnold Iselin
Mary Astor Edith Cortright
David Niven Major Clyde Lockert
Gregory Gaye Kurt Von Obersdorf
Maria Ouspenskaya Baroness Von Obersdorf
Odette Myrtil Renée de Penable
John Payne Harry
Spring Byington Matey Pearson
Harlan Briggs Tubby Pearson
Charles Halton Hazzard
Beatrice Maude Mary the Maid
John Barclay Guests in Ship Salon
Wilson Benge Steward
Gino Corrado American Express Clerk
Jack George Orchestra Leader
Fred Malatesta Ship's Waiter
Kathryn Marlowe Emily McKee
Inez Palange Edith's Housekeeper
Dale Van Sickel
Technical Credits
William Wyler Director
R.O. Binger Special Effects
Richard Day Art Director
Samuel Goldwyn Producer
Sidney Howard Screenwriter
Omar Kiam Costumes/Costume Designer
Dan Mandell Editor
Rudolph Maté Cinematographer
Alfred Newman Score Composer
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Absolutely one of the best ever

    I first saw this on TV and immediately fell in love with the movie. I couldn't wait until it came out on VHS. And now DVD! Great actors, great acting, great story, wonderful adaptation of the book. It has some of the best lines in movies: Ruth Chatterton and Mary Astor: 'I hope I look as good as you do when I'm your age'. . pause . . 'You're almost sure to my dear' Ruth Chatterton and John Huston: 'Do you think you can ever get me out of your blood?' 'I don't know but love has to stop someplace short of suicide!' Buy it, you'll like it!

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews