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Mary Reilly (1996)

304 votes, average 5.8 out of 10

A housemaid falls in love with Dr. Jekyll and his darkly mysterious counterpart, Mr. Hyde.

Mary Reilly (1996) Movie Review: A Gothic Tale of Intrigue and Transformation

Introduction

“Mary Reilly” (1996) is a gothic horror drama directed by Stephen Frears, based on the novel by Valerie Martin, which itself is a reimagining of Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic novella “Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.” Starring Julia Roberts and John Malkovich, the film provides a unique perspective on the familiar tale, focusing on the experiences of Dr. Jekyll’s housemaid, Mary Reilly. With its atmospheric cinematography and strong performances, “Mary Reilly” offers a dark and introspective exploration of duality and human nature. The film is available on various streaming services in the United States.

Plot Summary

The story follows Mary Reilly (Julia Roberts), a reserved and diligent housemaid working in the household of the enigmatic Dr. Henry Jekyll (John Malkovich). As Mary becomes increasingly involved in Dr. Jekyll’s life and mysterious experiments, she finds herself drawn to his complex and troubled nature. Unbeknownst to her, Dr. Jekyll’s experiments are aimed at separating his good and evil sides, resulting in the creation of his violent alter ego, Mr. Edward Hyde.

As Hyde’s actions become more reckless and dangerous, Mary grapples with her loyalty to Dr. Jekyll and her growing fear of Mr. Hyde. The film delves into Mary’s past, revealing her own traumatic experiences and how they shape her relationship with Jekyll and Hyde. The story builds to a tense and dramatic climax as the duality of Jekyll and Hyde’s existence threatens to unravel their lives and those around them.

Performances

Julia Roberts delivers a nuanced and understated performance as Mary Reilly, capturing the character’s quiet strength and vulnerability. Her portrayal conveys a deep emotional resonance, making Mary a compelling and empathetic figure. John Malkovich excels in his dual role as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, skillfully portraying the contrasting aspects of the character’s personality. Malkovich’s performance is both chilling and tragic, highlighting the internal conflict and desperation of Jekyll and the malevolent freedom of Hyde.

The supporting cast, including Glenn Close as Mrs. Farraday, a brothel madam, and Michael Gambon as Mary’s father, add depth and complexity to the film, enriching the narrative with their strong performances.

Themes and Style

“Mary Reilly” explores themes of duality, repression, and the struggle between good and evil. The film’s gothic atmosphere and dark, moody visuals enhance its exploration of these themes, creating a sense of dread and tension throughout. Director Stephen Frears uses the Victorian setting and detailed production design to immerse the audience in the era, emphasizing the constraints and societal pressures faced by the characters.

The film’s introspective and character-driven approach sets it apart from other adaptations of the Jekyll and Hyde story, focusing on the personal and emotional impact of the duality on those closest to Jekyll.

Visuals and Cinematography

The cinematography by Philippe Rousselot is a standout aspect of “Mary Reilly,” employing shadow and light to create a visually arresting and atmospheric experience. The use of candlelit interiors, foggy exteriors, and detailed period sets enhances the gothic tone of the film, while the careful framing and composition add to the sense of claustrophobia and unease.

Availability on Streaming Services

For those interested in watching “Mary Reilly” (1996) in the United States, the film is available on several streaming platforms. Viewers can find it on Amazon Prime Video and Hulu. These services offer the film in high definition, allowing audiences to fully appreciate the rich visuals and meticulous production design.

Conclusion

“Mary Reilly” (1996) is a haunting and introspective gothic drama that offers a fresh perspective on the classic tale of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. With strong performances by Julia Roberts and John Malkovich, and a richly atmospheric style, the film provides a compelling exploration of duality and the human psyche. Whether you’re a fan of gothic horror or looking for a unique take on a familiar story, “Mary Reilly” is a film worth watching. Stream it today on your preferred platform and delve into the dark and intriguing world of Mary Reilly.

  • Mary Reilly (1996) movie review
  • Mary Reilly film streaming
  • Mary Reilly Amazon Prime Video
  • Mary Reilly Hulu
  • Julia Roberts Mary Reilly
  • John Malkovich Mary Reilly
  • Gothic horror films 1996
  • Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde adaptations
  • Stephen Frears Mary Reilly
  • Duality in movies
Posted on:
Views:10
Tagline:The untold story of Jekyll and Hyde
Rate:R
Year:
Duration: 104 Min
Release:
Language:English
Budget:$ 47.000.000,00
Revenue:$ 12.379.402,00

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