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The Philadelphia Story

7.91 h 52 min1941X-RayU
Hepburn, Grant and Stewart excel in this classic movie which tells the tale of a rich woman who's about to remarry. When her ex-husband and a tabloid reporter turn up just before the wedding, she begins to learn the truth about herself. Brilliant!
George Cukor
Cary GrantJames StewartKatharine Hepburn
English [CC]
Audio Languages
Rentals include 30 days to start watching this video and 48 hours to finish once started.
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Supporting actors
Ruth HusseyJohn Howard
Warner Bros.
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Prime Video (streaming online video)
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4.6 out of 5 stars

1177 global ratings

  1. 77% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 15% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 3% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 2% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 3% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United Kingdom

Andrei sReviewed in the United Kingdom on 23 August 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
Three &(they make it look) Easy..
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"Just about everything that a blue-chip comedy should have -a witty ,romantic script, the flavour of high-society elegance and a splendid cast of performers". So said a Bosley Crowther of the New York Times and it says much about why George Cukors' film (1940) of a very popular stage play, still sparkles today and appeals to people of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds (& was nominated for 6 Oscars).
If you haven't seen the film but may have enjoyed 'Arsenic & old lace', 'Bringing up Baby', 'The African Queen', 'Sullivan's travels', the 50s musical remake 'High Society' or even 'Breakfast at Tiffany's' then I think you should find much to like here; a movie that has real 'star power' from its 3 big name leads but where the support cast & 'bit part' players all fit in perfectly.
Although often thought of as a screwball comedy, this film really has a depth, design, & feeling, with skilful direction & an acting masterclass, so that despite being based around the privileged rich & 'well to do', is still emotionally engaging & I don't think will ever be just 'a period piece'.
This review is for the 2005 2disc 'Special edition'.
On disc1 is a good 'digitally remastered' version of the movie, that highlights the cinematography & has an excellent commentary by Jeannine Basinger who provides an astute,insightful & non stop treasure trove of information on Hepburn, Grant, Stewart and much more.
There's also trailers for 10 of director George Cukors' other films & a list of awards .The film also has German and Spanish language versions available and has subtitles in 17 different languages.
Disc2 has a fascinating 'self portrait' documentary from 1992 (70mins) where K.Hepburn now in her later years gives considerable access & talks with humour, honesty and some sadness about her life & career (with a surprising amount of detail given to her 'true love' Spencer Tracy.) There is also a good 55min documentary from 2001 on George Cukor & his many films .written & directed by the respected Richard Schickel + a 9 min short and a 7min cartoon to give you a flavour of the entertainment a cinema audience of the time would have experienced.(all the extras are also subtitled in the various languages) finish off there is an hour long and 30min 'radio versions' of the story ,starring the original cast .
1.0 mono audio .1 hour47mins .aspect ratio '1.37(full frame)'. An excellent film and in a package to do it justice. All available at prices that should make ownership essential.
9 people found this helpful
DaisyReviewed in the United Kingdom on 20 December 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Sparkling script and performances
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I was amazed when I realised this movie was made in 1940. Katharine Hepburn plays a privileged but smart woman, Tracey Lord, delivering a brilliantly witty script under the direction of George Cukor. Cary Grant as Dexter Haven is at his handsome best, his timing adding to the comedy of his lines. There are issues about class and education, but it's a story of its time and I just loved watching it again. Without the technology available even a decade later, movies then had to be about scripts and performances, and this is definitely top drawer!
3 people found this helpful
Earnest WorthingReviewed in the United Kingdom on 30 May 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Excellent movie
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It is said, and some claim scientifically confirmed, as much as that could be of course, that colleges like Princeton, Yale, Cambridge and other similar, do not add actual value to their students, rather they just have learned how to pick the best students to begin with. Considering the amount of lies and deceit that is commonly published in the so called textbooks that might just be the case. In fact I do expect that this is the case. Similarly and at the same time in difference some actors are just like those colleges. In similarity Cary Grant and James Stewart usually, rather, perhaps always play in good or excellent movies. In difference, I rather leave it for you to figure. Excellent movie, witty, and entertaining, and happy ending.
One person found this helpful
coraReviewed in the United Kingdom on 27 July 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
An All Time Favourite
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This is one of my favourite films ever. Hard to believe it's 80 years old by now. It's a truly timeless classic of the romantic comedy genre. There's the rich society bride, her boring fiance, the semi-reformed ex-husband, and an uninvited reporter from a society rag with his photographer in tow. The setting is the Lords' estate somewhere in the environs of (surely not exactly *in*...?) Philadelphia, the time is the day before the wedding. And in this little film it's the bride, not the groom, who has one last fling on the night before the wedding...

The cast with Katharine Hepburn, Cary Grant and James Stewart in the lead is hard to beat. All three are among my all time favourites. Hepburn is the spoilt rich society girl. Well, divorcee in this case. Grant is the ex-husband, charming as ever, but a bit of a cad. Stewart is the decent working class bloke - hugely likable and a lot of fun in the scenes where he's drunk. I forget who plays Hepburn's stuffy husband to be, but I suspect we're meant to. The character is, after all, forgettable. And then there is the child actress who play's Hepburn's little sister... and she steals every scene she's in. She is absolutely priceless - dances to the piano in her ballet shoes, sits down and belts out "Lydia" in a raucus voice. I love her to bits.

The entire film is hugely entertaining. The actors are all on top form, and that includes the supporting cast, the script is razor sharp, sets and costumes are beautiful - perfect for an hour and a half of light entertainment. Fluffy escapism a la 1940s.

The DVD I own is a Region 1 disc for which a multiregion device is required. This was clearly stated at the time of purchase and did not come as a surprise. However, it is advisable to read the product description carefully to avoid disappointment if you don't own a compatible device.
J. Temperance (Hull)Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 26 November 2018
4.0 out of 5 stars
Philadelphia - Not just average chesse
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A great cast performance with the three leading stars at their shining best and their supporting players offering memorable cameos. The film is now dated in its concept and wouldn't have worked, still works now, due to it being well directed and with a interesting script especially the dialogue which is clever with brilliant one liners. It is a film that also wouldn't have worked without Cary Grant playing his role in an understated way which gives a lot of space for Hepburn and Stewart, plus also Ruth Hussey and Victoria Weilder, to give full life ton their characters. A film that you should watch to see Hollywood greats, being well directed and given a top screenplay.
Mike RantReviewed in the United Kingdom on 13 August 2016
5.0 out of 5 stars
lightning banter and biting retorts caught by a stellar cast at their best. Jimmy Stewart and Cary Grant being "drunk" is ...
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Never surpassed, that era of fast-paced repartee, lightning banter and biting retorts caught by a stellar cast at their best. Jimmy Stewart and Cary Grant being "drunk" is still my favourite scene in any film - ever! Essentially a 'can't live with him, can't live without him' romance, Hepburn as the society brat with attitude aplenty never falters in her confidence and her withering stare is so believable, it's hard not to believe her reputation at that time. Cukor directed some brilliant films, notably Gaslight, A Star is Born and My Fair Lady, but for me this is his greatest contribution to the golden age of Hollywood - modern comedians should be banned from performing in public until they can recite the entire script verbatim! Can it really be that good? I hear you thinking - 'BETTER!' is the short answer - watch it!
5 people found this helpful
HannahReviewed in the United Kingdom on 26 December 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
Very good
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The first few minutes of this film are hilarious. I would be surprised if Katharine Hepburn didn't suffer a concussion. The story is romantic but keeps its comedic effort in close proximity. Along with James Stewart (It's a Wonderful Life) and Cary Grant (An Affair to Remember) who are brilliant. You need to see this!
wyegirlReviewed in the United Kingdom on 24 June 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
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Product arrived promptly, securely packaged. With a stellar cast, never to be caught "acting", this must rate as one of the earliest contenders for Oscar status. Everything is perfect from actors delivery of witty lines to company who delivered the said package to the customer.
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