With the death of Kirk Douglas a couple days ago, I was in the mood to watch one of his films. However, I've seen most of his work and so after a bit of research I found something I haven't seen...nor knew that he ever made in the first place. It seems that back in 1973, he starred in a made for TV musical version of "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde"! While this sounded just dreadful, it did make me curious...and when I found it on YouTube I knew I just had to see it.
Before you decide to watch this one, there are a couple things you should know. Even for YouTube, the quality of the print is simply awful...so bad that a sane person probably wouldn't bother--which says a lot about me! Also, there are blank gaps in the film where the commercials used to be...so be sure to speed through them.
So is the film good? No. While the sets and costumes are lovely, the music really didn't work. The songs weren't very good (why a song all about bicycle?) but also it seemed strange having Douglas in the lead singing most of the songs as he really didn't have a great voice. Why not pick an actor with a strong voice, such as Gordon MacRae or Howard Keel? I also couldn't understand why they didn't stick closer to Robert Louis Stevenson's novel? The original motivation for the Doctor's work was to unlock the dark side of a human being....here he's a neurologist who is trying to cure insanity. Why the change? I also thought the makeup to make Jekyll become Hyde was cheap and silly--mostly just cotton stuffed in Douglas' mouth! It made me laugh when folks didn't recognize him...when he simply looked like Jekyll with mumps! I also laughed when Jekyll keeps talking to describe EVERYTHING he's thinking and doing...didn't this seem awkward to anyone when they did it?
Overall, this is a silly and misguided film project.
Review by MartinHafer from the Internet Movie Database.