The Hunchback of Notre Dame

The Hunchback of Notre Dame

DVD - 1997
Average Rating:
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Charles Laughton stars as Quasimodo, the deformed bell-ringer of Notre Dame and Maureen O'Hara is Esmeralda, the beautiful gypsy he adores.
Publisher: Burbank, CA : Warner Home Video, c1997.
ISBN: 9780780620940
0780620941
Branch Call Number: DVD MOVIE DRAMA
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (117 min.) : sound, black and white ; 4 3/4 in.
Alternative Title: Charles Laughton in

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garycornell
Sep 29, 2014

Victor Hugo wrote a terrific novel "The Hunchback of Notre Dame". This is the story of Quasimodo, who is brilliantly played by Charles Laughton. The character is the deformed bell ringer of Notre Dame. Maureen O'Hara plays Esmeralda, who is being held in the church after being framed for the murder of a man. I won't ruin a classic film plot for you, but it all plays out brilliantly. Although first made as a silent movie with Lon Chaney, and remade many times over the years, critics still feel that Charles Laughton was the ultimate Quasimodo. So back to 15th Century England and the "Hunchback of Notre Dame". Victor Hugo would be proud of his writing given life with this great movie.

l
lukasevansherman
Feb 18, 2014

Of the three major productions of Hugo's "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" (the other two being the Lon Chaney version and the Disney one), this may be the best. In the great Charles Laughton it certainly has the best Quasimodo, whose extraordinary make-up, which took hours to put on, renders him unrecognizable and was an influence on Sloth from "The Goonies," as well as the Disney version. The sets, costumes and cast of 1000s give it an epic scope and if the direction is a little sluggish, it doesn't really affect the story all that much. Maureen O'Hara is good, but is miscast as a gypsy. The only special feature is a making of documentary.

m
Monolith
Sep 02, 2013

Charles Laughton steals the show in this version of Victor Hugo's tale. In what I would consider an out of character role for him, he is hugely, HUGELY expressive in relaying his pain and sadness non-verbally, for the most part, as the poor unfortunate Quasimodo. Nineteen year-old Maureen O'Hara was exquisite here in her first American film, due mostly to Laughton's persuasiveness and recommendation, to which she was forever grateful. Baby-faced Edmond O'Brien was almost unrecognizable to me; so young and energetic as Esmeralda's admirer Gringoire. This is a wonderful classic, that spared no expense in production, and it ranks right up there with two of my other favorite Charles Laughton movies, both released in 1935: "Les Misérables", and "Mutiny on the Bounty". Maybe you've heard of them. :) FIVE STARS.

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m
Monolith
Sep 02, 2013

Quasimodo, the bell-ringer (to one of the cathedral's gargoyles, as he watches Esmeralda leave): "...Why was I not made of stone... like thee?"

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