Rembrandt (1936 film)

Rembrandt is a 1936 British biographical film made by London Film Productions of the life of 17th-century Dutch painter Rembrandt van Rijn.[1] The film was produced and directed by Alexander Korda from a screenplay by June Head and Lajos Bíró based on a story by Carl Zuckmayer. The music score was by Geoffrey Toye and the cinematography by Georges Périnal.[2]

DVD Cover
Directed byAlexander Korda
Produced byAlexander Korda
Written byJune Head
Lajos Bíró
Arthur Wimperis
Based onstory by Carl Zuckmayer
StarringCharles Laughton
Gertrude Lawrence
Elsa Lanchester
Edward Chapman
Music byGeoffrey Toye
CinematographyGeorges Périnal
Edited byFrancis D. Lyon
William Hornbeck (sup)
Distributed byLondon Film Productions (US)
United Artists (UK)
Release date
6 November 1936 (UK)
25 December 1936 (US)
Running time
85 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom



Alexander Korda had previously worked with Laughton on the critically successful The Private Life of Henry VIII. Laughton's wife, Elsa Lanchester, has a role in the film as Hendrickje, Rembrandt's maid who also became his lover.

Critical reception

The New York Times wrote, "Charles Laughton and Alexander Korda have produced a great, and rich, and glowing motion picture in "Rembrandt," which opened yesterday at the Rivoli, a picture signed all over with distinction, like one of the master's own canvases";[3] while more recently, Time Out wrote that the film was "Less successful at the time than the earlier Private Life of Henry VIII, but a far better film, thanks to a subtle, touching performance from Laughton as the ageing painter...Surprisingly sombre, it lacks a tight plot, but appeals through its vivid characterisation, superb Vincent Korda sets, and Georges Périnal's lovely camerawork."[4]

Writing for The Spectator in 1936, Graham Greene gave the film a poor review, describing it as "a series of unrelated tableaux". Greene found that "the film is ruined by lack of story ['line'] and continuity [...] [which is the] drive of a well-constructed plot". Greene gave some praise for the acting of Laughton and Lanchester, but condemned the direction stating "I have called the film reverent, but pompous, I fear, would be nearer the mark."[5]



  • Jerry Vermilye The Great British Films, Citadel Press, 1978, pp 32–35 ISBN 0-8065-0661-X
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.