Jack the Ripper is an enduring tale and one that has been examined before in various film versions, so how does "From Hell" measure up. Pretty well to be honest. The film is an entertaining version of events in Whitechapel, although of course it is more fiction than fact. The theory about the Ripper's identity is by no means a new one, and most Ripperologists discount it as being untrue. However, as a film it makes for a good entertaining premise.
Johnny Depp is good as Inspector Abberline, although his "Cockney" accent is pretty poor! I did not particularly like the reinvention of Abberline as an opium addict, but I suppose each of these films need some new, unique angle on an old tale and this certainly provides a different element to most versions. The mostly British cast puts in some strong performances, an really the only one who let down the side for me was Heather Graham, who was not bad but whose performance was a little lazy for me. And her accent was even worse than Depp's! Ian Holm and Robbie Coltrane are as excellent as ever, and it was their performances that I enjoyed the most.
The film is well made and the atmosphere is excellently built up throughout the film. It is one of those films where you notice something different almost every time you watch it and it takes a couple of watches to appreciate the story fully. Overall this is a good version of the Ripper tale, entertaining though historically inaccurate but, hey, its a film so they are entitled to some artistic licence. If you want to find out who the Ripper was though you will need to read the books, not watch this.