From Hell - Single Disc Edition  [DVD]
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Johnny Depp stars as Inspector Abberline, the Victorian detective charged with catching Jack the Ripper, in this big screen adaptation of Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell's acclaimed graphic novel. Despite the fact that he is struggling with an opium addiction and the ghosts of his dead wife and child, Abberline nevertheless quickly discovers that the Ripper is a man with an expert's knowledge of human anatomy and some kind of connection to the Freemasons. As his investigations continue, he meets prostitute Mary Kelly (Heather Graham) and following her leads discovers that the killings are connected to people in the highest reaches of British society; but as he gets closer to revealing the culprit, both he and Mary find themselves in mortal danger.
Heavy on atmosphere and light on everything else, From Hell is visually impressive while lacking the depth of the acclaimed graphic novel it's based upon. Making their third feature since 1993's Menace II Society, twins Allen and Albert Hughes approach the Jack the Ripper case with physical precision, re-creating the gritty Whitechapel district of 1888 London in meticulous detail. What they've forgotten is the sheer terror that gripped Whitechapel in the wake of the Ripper's slaying of five prostitutes, investigated here by a Scotland Yard sleuth (Johnny Depp) who uses opium, laudanum and absinthe to fuel his semi-prescient visions of the slayings. Heather Graham attempts a slippery Cockney accent as a would-be victim, while Ian Holm steals the show as a has-been surgeon with devilish delusions of grandeur. Violence is obliquely suggested or briefly graphic, but no matter how you cut it, From Hell is only marginally thrilling as it treads familiar territory. --Jeff Shannon --This text refers to the Blu-ray edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
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.
Johnny Depp plays Inspector Abberline, the very middle class policemen in charge of the investigation into the series of murders of local prostitutes in the area. Ably assisted by Sgt Godley (Robbie Coltrane) Abberline befriends Mary Kelly (Heather Graham) a beautiful red haired "unfortunate" whose small group of prostitute friends is slowly diminishing in numbers as the Ripper strikes again and again.
More of the plot I cannot give away without ruining some of the secrets but there's many a twist and turn in store for the viewer. Whether this is a truly accurate account of the Ripper tale I'm not sure, and I'm sure there are plenty of Ripper anoraks who'll be only too happy to condemn the film for inaccuracies.
But to judge the film only on its authenticity to the Ripper legend is to miss the main point. This is an extremely thrilling and distinctive film. As I mentioned before the settings in the back streets of Whitechapel are horrendous in their squalor and unpleasantness and extremely well crafted.
Depp plays his part with distinction and great feeling and as always Coltrane provides great support. Other players worthy of mention are Ian Holm and Ian Richardson who play the "pillars" of the upper classes with great skill.
To sum up, even though this film had its fair share of blood and gore and had me hiding behind the cushion on more than one occasion, I was riveted for the duration of the film and definitely enjoyed this period "slasher" movie!
Way back in the 19th century (in the fall of 1888 to be precise) one of the worlds first recorded serial killers brutally murdered five prostitutes (yes, only 5) bringing terror to London's east end slums. And whilst, in terms of numbers, modern serial killers such as Jeffrey Dahmer have been much more prolific, it seems that it is still Jack The Ripper's crimes that continue to still fascinate many people. Is it because of the brutal yet clinical way that the murders were carried out? Or is it because the case remains unsolved? Probably both but as The Hughes brothers, previously best known for the likes of Menace II Society, have set out to prove, that although long dead there are still plenty of 'worthy' suspects.
Based on the Alan Moore/Eddie Campbell cartoon strip and using the very beautiful city of Prague to expertly recreate Victorian London, The Hughes Brothers' latest movie pitches the clairvoyant, opium partaking, Inspector Fred Abberline (an impressive Johnny Depp), aided by his assistant Peter Godley (the always excellent Robbie Coltrane) racing against time in search of history's most notorious murderer, in this very watchable and very enjoyable yarn.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Really interesting 2 disk special edition DVD. My husband and I really enjoyed watching this. Would thoroughly recommend.Published 2 months ago by Wendy Martin
If you have never seen From Hell before, then I urge you to make this purchase! Definitely one of the better Ripper movies!Published 2 months ago by SirJossOfHimself
I wanted to watch a gripping, realistic and gritty film. This isn't it. Great sets and costumes but you don't ever really believe in it.Published 4 months ago by BermondseyStu