The Barretts of Wimpole Street (1934) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Barretts of Wimpole Street (1934)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Barretts of Wimpole Street Photos

Movie Info

Based on a successful stage drama, this historical romance stars Norma Shearer as Elizabeth Barrett, an invalid largely confined to her bed. Elizabeth has little company beyond her dog and her obsessively protective father, Edward Moulton Barrett (Charles Laughton). Her one great passion and means of emotional escape is writing poetry, to which she devotes a large part of her days. She makes the acquaintance of fellow poet Robert Browning (Fredric March), who pays her a visit. They respect each others' literary abilities and become romantically attracted to each other. Robert asks for Elizabeth's hand in marriage, but Edward refuses to allow it. Elizabeth must battle her father for the right to live her own life, but eventually she is able to wed Robert and bring herself back to health. Director Sidney A. Franklin also helmed a remake of The Barretts of Wimpole Street (1957); it was his last film.
Classics , Drama , Romance
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:

Watch it now


Norma Shearer
as Elizabeth Barrett
Fredric March
as Robert Browning
Charles Laughton
as Edward Moulton Barrett
Ian Wolfe
as Harry Bevan
Maureen O'Sullivan
as Henrietta Barrett
Katherine Alexander
as Arabel Barrett
Una O'Connor
as Wilson
Marion Clayton
as Bella Hedley
Ralph Forbes
as Capt. Surtees Cook
Vernon P. Downing
as Octavius Barrett
Neville Clark
as Charles Barrett
Neville Clarke
as Charles Barrett
Matthew Smith
as George Barrett
Matt Smith
as George Barrett
Robert Carleton
as Alfred Barrett
Alan Conrad
as Henry Barrett
Peter Hobbes
as Septimus Barrett
Ferdinand Munier
as Dr. Chambers
Leo G Carroll
as Dr. Ford-Waterlow
George Kirby
as Coachman
Winter Hall
as Clergyman
Lowden Adams
as Butler
Robert Bolder
as Old Man
Leo Carrillo
as Dr. Ford-Waterlow
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for The Barretts of Wimpole Street

All Critics (7) | Top Critics (3)

As a film it's slow. Very. The first hour is wandering, planting-the-plot stuff that has some difficulty cementing the interest, but in the final stretch it grips and holds.

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

Sidney Franklin has filmed a drama of beauty, dignity and nobility.

Full Review… | March 25, 2006
New York Times
Top Critic

Slow, deliberate, dull.

Full Review… | January 26, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

One of the better-known and more typical of MGM's adaptations of famous stage plays.

Full Review… | January 31, 2012
TV Guide

Sidney Franklin's first version of the story is stiff and stagy, but it offers good roles for Charles Laughton as the tyrannical and abusive father and Norma Shearer as his invalid poet-daughter.

Full Review… | February 10, 2008

When not even Charles Laughton, playing a deranged, scarily pious, and pretty obviously incestuous domineering father can save a film, you know you have problems.

Full Review… | December 5, 2004
Goatdog's Movies

Audience Reviews for The Barretts of Wimpole Street

A bit on the melodramatic side but I think this was the time period that created the melodrama. Fredric March is seemingly in every film as the leading man and here he performs his duty and gets his maid.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

The Barretts of Wimpole Street Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Discussion Forum

Discuss The Barretts of Wimpole Street on our Movie forum!

News & Features