The Picture of Dorian Gray

Watch The Picture of Dorian Gray

  • TV-14
  • 1973
  • 1 hr 51 min
  • 6.3  (511)

The Picture of Dorian Gray is a 1973 film adaptation of Oscar Wilde's novel of the same name, directed by Glenn Jordan. The movie stars Charles Aidman as Basil Hallward, the artist who paints the titular portrait of Dorian Gray (Shane Briant), a young man who makes a Faustian deal for eternal youth and beauty. William Beckley portrays the hedonistic Lord Henry Wotton, who corrupts Dorian with his philosophy of pleasure-seeking.

The film follows the novel's basic plot, as Dorian introduces Basil and Lord Henry to each other at his London home, and Basil becomes infatuated with Dorian's youthful beauty. Basil paints Dorian's portrait, and Lord Henry expounds on his philosophy of hedonism, telling Dorian that youth and beauty are the only things that matter in life. Dorian wishes that his portrait would age instead of him, and a magical transformation occurs: the portrait will bear the physical marks of Dorian's dissolute life, while Dorian himself remains youthful and unblemished.

As Dorian indulges in all manner of hedonistic pleasures, including drug use and murder, his portrait becomes more and more hideous, reflecting his inner corruption. Dorian's conscience is represented by a ghostly figure played by Vanessa Howard, who haunts him throughout the film, reminding him of his crimes and urging him to make amends.

The performances in the film are solid, with Aidman and Beckley delivering memorable portrayals of their respective characters. Briant's Dorian is suitably handsome and enigmatic, conveying the character's charm and his ultimate descent into moral decay. The film's depiction of the novel's various scandals and moral dilemmas is faithful, if somewhat sanitized for a mainstream audience.

One of the strengths of the film is its visuals, particularly the portrayal of the portrait's transformation. The film uses a mix of practical and special effects to achieve the effect of the portrait aging and deteriorating, which is impressive for a film of its era. The film's cinematography also captures the decadent, sensual atmosphere of the novel's setting, with lush colors and moody lighting.

However, the film's pacing is uneven, with some scenes feeling slow or repetitive. The film's climax in particular feels rushed and lacks the suspense and moral complexity of the novel's resolution. Additionally, some of the dialogue feels stilted or overly expository, detracting from the film's subtler themes and character development.

Overall, The Picture of Dorian Gray is a competent adaptation of a classic novel, with strong performances and impressive visuals. While it may not fully capture the depth and nuance of Oscar Wilde's writing, it remains a worthwhile watch for fans of Gothic fiction, supernatural horror, or classic cinema.

The Picture of Dorian Gray is a 1973 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 51 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.3.

The Picture of Dorian Gray
Where to Watch The Picture of Dorian Gray
The Picture of Dorian Gray is available to watch free on Pluto TV and Tubi TV. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Amazon. Some platforms allow you to rent The Picture of Dorian Gray for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 51 min
  • IMDB Rating
    6.3  (511)