Saturday, February 28, 2015
The Elephant Man (1980)
IMDb plot summary: A Victorian surgeon rescues a heavily disfigured man who is mistreated while scraping a living as a side-show freak. Behind his monstrous facade, there is revealed a person of intelligence and sensitivity.
Directed by David Lynch. Starring Anthony Hopkins, John Hurt, Anne Bancruft, and John Gielgud.
Well, it's certainly the most coherent narrative I've seen David Lynch do. I'm not sure it functions well as a full movie, though. It's most powerful and interesting when seen as a series of moments that don't necessarily progress the story as much as provide snapshots. None of the characters aside from Merrick himself are particularly noteworthy -- Anthony Hopkins apparently found his doctor character a dull one to play, and for good reason. The calm reserve that made Hopkins so good in, for example, Remains of the Day feels just passive here.
The individual moments that are the most interesting rely heavily on Hurt's performance, which is excellent. He is captivating to watch on screen.
I'm not entirely sure how i feel about this yet. I do think it's good, but it's not as impressive overall as I'd hoped it would be.
How it entered my Flickchart:
The Elephant Man > Last Action Hero
The Elephant Man < Argo
The Elephant Man < Crazy Heart
The Elephant Man > Black Snake Moan
The Elephant Man > Three Colors: Blue
The Elephant Man > 12 Years a Slave
The Elephant Man > Peggy Sue Got Married
The Elephant Man > Phantom of the Paradise
The Elephant Man < Kiss the Girls
The Elephant Man < Captain America: The First Avenger
The Elephant Man < Knight and Day
The Elephant Man < Dawn of the Dead (1978)
Final spot: #882 out of 2330.