My friend found this film months ago on Youtube and thought it was just hilarious. She knew I loved ’80s films and horror and sent the link to me. Unfortunately, the video had been taken down.
However, the other day a friend of hers found a copy of it, so we were able to watch it. Now this film is a horror-comedy, Com-Ror, but at the same time being a parody of those teen films from the ’50s, like I Was a Teenage Werewolf, etc.
Originally the screen writer wanted Michael J. Fox to star in the film, but the director, Samuel Goldwyn Jr. thought he wouldn’t be able to carry a theatrical film of this scale.
By the time this film came out, Fox had already starred in Teen Wolf and Back to the Future, both making far more money then this film and cementing Fox’s stardom.
But we aren’t here to talk about those films, we are going to talk about this one.
The Countess (Lauren Hutton) is nearing her 400th birthday. In her mansion resides: one from early 18th century England, a french sailor, a confederate from the Civil War, her butler and chauffeur from the 1880s, a WWI pilot, a 1960s flower child, and a set of twins. Every so many years she needs virgin blood to keep her young and beautiful. Three times and the one she has bitten will become a vampire too. That time has come again, but she and her minions are having trouble finding a virgin in 1985 Hollywood.
Countess: How many days left till Halloween, Sebastian?
Sebastian: Oh, a little more than a week, Countess. I told you not to worry.
Countess: Not to worry? How amusing. But then you’re not the one who needs to have the virgin blood of a young man not once, but three times before All Hallows Eve. Not to worry? Being a vampire in the 20th century is a nightmare!
She ponders on what to do, but Sebastian reassures her, they will find a virgin.
So we are introduce to 18-year-old Mark Kendell (Jim Carrey) and his girlfriend Robin, who live near Hollywood, CA. Mark really wants to have sex, but Robin isn’t ready to do it yet. She wants to wait. Mark is feeling extremely frustrated as he feels as if he is only one who is a virgin.
I mean come on dude, your best buds haven’t had sex yet and neither has your girlfriend. That’s four right there and there are probably a lot more.
Anyways, so Mark goes to see his friends at the burger joint they work, and these two dudes are quite the crew. One believes he is God’s gift to women and continuously uses the stupidest line to try and pick up women, thinking it will work.
Russ: Hi. I’m Russ, and I’m a Sagittarius. I enjoy surfing, candlelit dinners, and Tolstoy. Listen: I’m a mature person and you’re a mature person, so why don’t we just skip all the bullshit, get rid of our inhibitions, and DO what we really wanna DO?
The other, Jamie, is Eeyore in human form; always pessimistic and believing the sky is falling.
So he goes to his friends and complains about the relationship, Russ telling him that Robin is never going to do it and he should just move on.
What a jerk
Russ then suggests they go find some women to loose their virginity to. They decide to head out to Hollywood and see if they can find some. When I think of Jim Carrey in Hollywood, one film comes to mind…
But I digress, so the group heads to a club called Phone a Date. You pick a table, phone one of the other tables by the numbers assigned to them, and ask to come on over. It actually is kind of a cute idea.
As long as the person on the other end isn’t a serial killer or creep.
So boys try it out: with Russ first getting a transvestite, then getting rejected, and finally someone calling Mark over. By this time the boys are extremely hammered, having consumed 4 beers each. When Mark walks over, the woman is the Countess.
She gives him champagne and starts coming on to him, but Mark isn’t really interested in going home with her. He pretty much is out of it, actually. Meanwhile, his friends have two older ladies who are interested in them. They start talking and having fun, when one of the ladies’ husband comes, yells at the boys, and then starts shooting the club up.
Mark freaks out, and the Countess convinces him to come with her, taking him up to her mansion. Meanwhile, the guy is arrested and the friends are taken off too.
Back at the house, the Countess gives Mark even more champagne. She goes upstairs to get ready, and comes back prepared to feast!
After he is bitten, Mark passes out. The next day he is awakened by Sebastian and the Countess. Mark leaves and promises that he will call and the two can meet up again sometime, but has no real plans to see her anymore. He has a girlfriend, and he is happy to finally lost his virginity.
But he feels really weird. He starts eating raw meat, even though he’s only loved well-done food. He also can’t remember a thing that’s happened.
His friends ask him what happened and he tells them in the crowded quad, right where his girlfriend is.
She of course become angry with him for cheating on her and breaks up with him.
Robin Pierce: Oh Mark, I can’t believe you’re going to throw away our relationship on a one-night stand with a chauffeur and a butler and a slut who eats buttons! But you did. You really did! [takes ring off her finger] You can have your d*** ring back!
Mark Kendall: What am I supposed to do with it?
Robin Pierce: Use your imagination!
Mark’s weird behavior continues as he wants to sleep in trunks, looks pale, wears sunglasses all the time, and just acts vampireish.
He starts having these strange dreams where the Countess is in, but he doesn’t want her. He doesn’t call her like he said he would but tries to get back with Robin.
Robin accepts his apology and everything is all right again.
That night Mark and his friends head downtown. Russ and Jamie try again to pick up on women, but it doesn’t turn out well. Russ hits on a dominatrix and Jamie…well I don’t know what he said but it sure wasn’t good.
Mark goes to Robin’s work and picks out some clothes to try on, black of course.
Black is best
While he is in the dressing room, who should appear but the Countess. Mark tries to get rid of her as he isn’t interested, but she won’t take no for an answer. She bites him again. This film actually reminds me of Fatal Attraction, as the morals of both stories: Don’t cheat in a relationship and don’t try to have a one night stand.
So Mark passes out and Robin takes him home. The next day he is acting even stranger. He looks more like a Vampire, can barely tolerate light, wears only black, drinks blood, etc. Then when he tries to sell some ice-cream, he…
Mark becomes extremely worried, and goes to the nearby Catholic Church to ask for help. Unfortunately, a drunkard steps into the confessional and tell him he’s screwed.
Mark is continuously haunted by the Countess and starts to really become frightened with the idea that he might become a vampire.
I really liked the dream sequence as it was reminiscent of Dracula (1931).
Soon it will be Halloween but as it falls on a weekend, they are having a pre-Halloween party.
Mark and Robin were supposed to go as Jack and Jill, but Mark couldn’t get the costume so he dressed like he normally does. But everyone thinks he is a vampire.
While Robin and Mark are dancing, the Countess comes in and tries to control Mark into going with her. But Robin doesn’t like people messing with her man.
And this resorts in one of the best scenes, a dance-off.
Afterwards, Mark has a bit of a freakout and takes off, Robin chasing after him. She tries to calm him down. His reflection disappears and Mark tells Robin everything. Robin is weirded out, but when she doesn’t see his reflections, she starts to believe it. So she heads out to do some research.
She finds out that in order to know if he has been bitten by a female vampire, all you need to do is check the inner thigh for a bite mark. So of course she asks Mark and finds out that yes, he has been bit.
Instead she asks his friends to find out for her, to look at him. They don’t want to but she guilt trips them into doing it, telling them that if they are really his friends they would look.
Why not ask?
So they ask Mark.
Instead they try to look at him in the shower, resulting…well I guess I didn’t have to say it, you know it won’t turn out well.
Mark Kendall: What was that scene in the shower all about?
Russ: That’s the thanks I get for trying to help out a friend?
Mark Kendall: Oh you’re a big help, thanks a lot. Did it ever occur to you guys that maybe you could’ve asked me?
Jamie: Oh my God!
The way Jamie says that reminds me of Arnold in Troll 2.
So they see Robin in the parking lot when she is abducted by the Countess and her gang. You see tonight is Halloween and the Countess needs the third bite or she will revert to showing her true age. Mark is worried about something happening to Robin so he heads over there, aided by Jamie and Russ.
When they get there they find Robin tied up and let her out, but the whole thing…
The vampires capture them and take them upstairs, where they get ready to get the last bite and turn Mark into a vampire. Mark doesn’t want to:
The Countess starts trying to control him, but Robin isn’t going to lose her man. She jumps in the middle with a cross, the friends grabbing fire, and they free him.
[Van Helsing reaches out for his crucifix as Dracula looms toward him] Count Dracula: More wolfbane? Van Helsing: More effective than wolfbane, Count. Count Dracula: Indeed. [Dracula lunges towards Van Helsing. Van Helsing holds up the crucifix. Dracula snarls and turns away. Van Helsing, in triumph, puts away the crucifix]
Then the chase is on!
In the end there is only one thing left to do to save Mark.
All, besides the vampires, are happy. Mark scored, Jamie scored, Russ scored, Robin scored.
I really enjoyed this film and I thought it was pretty hilarious, although having Hocus Pocus level anti-virginity theme. But a lot of fun to watch and sure to be a fun film to watch this season.
With Halloween approaching and the number of Horror films increasing, I thought it would be a good time to write a post on how to survive a horror film, just in case you happen upon this situation 😉 . Most of us have heard of the “Randy Rules” in Scream (1996), but in this we are going to look a bit more in depth in how to successfully survive a horror film.
1) Do Not Try Out Witchcraft, Ouija Boards, or any of the Occult for “Fun.” You Will Be Messing with Forces You Have No Control Over
It is never good to mess with the occult, play around with witchcraft, or use the ouija board. When you do such things you are opening a door to a lot of stuff you don’t want to mess with. Often you open yourself or others to demon possession or evil spirits. It is best to just stay far away from such things.
2) Do Not Make Deals With the Devil, Demons, or Other Supernatural Beings
Never, ever make a deal with the devil. It is like trying to mess with the occult or witchcraft, you are opening yourself up to serious trouble, and the devil will not like to loose his quarry. Besides, the deals/wishes you make never turn out exactly as you hope.
One of the things that bothers me the most is when people are surrounded by potential weapons and don’t use them. I mean look at Scream (1996), when Tatum is in the garage and attacked by Ghostface, she tries to squeeze herself through a tiny hole to escape rather then use something, anything in the garage. I mean she is in a GARAGE!!! There are hundreds of potential weapons! USE THEM!!! That is one example, but seriously, use anything and everything.
4) Don’t Stop Assaulting Your Attacker Until You are Sure They Are Not Going to Get Up
Now this is huge. In horror movies, if the person is able to outwit the killer and knock them out, they usually just leave it at that and take off. DON’T! You knock that sucker out until you are sure they are no longer going to try to injure you. Break their legs if necessary. Because if you don’t, they are just going to recover and come after you.
5) If Someone Gives You a Protective Charm Do Not Give It Away
I have mentioned this in Dracula (1931), The Mummy (1932), The Wolf Man (1941), Scream 2 (1997), and many more. If someone gives you some kind of charm that is supposed to help you and only work for you, DO NOT GIVE IT AWAY!!!! It will only work FOR YOU!!!! That is why it was given TO YOU!! And if you give it away you are just going to get yourself and the person you were trying to help in serious trouble. Keep it and protect yourself so that you can actually help others, instead of accidentally killing them.
6) Sex = Death
As Randy says in Scream, Sex = Death. Never overlook the purity angle, it is like a protective charm. If you don’t do it, you are less likely to die.
Sometimes Doctors can be good people, but if you are in a horror film, forget it; they are usually evil. Such as Dr. Hartz from The Lady Vanishes (1938), he seems kindly and trying to help, but in reality just wants the main character to think they are going crazy! Same thing in Dr. Hollingshead from The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (1947). Then you have doctors who commit horrible things in the name of science; like We have Dr. Frankenstein (from any Frankenstein film) who tries to create life and can’t control his monster. Or there is Dr. Arthur Carrington from The Thing From Another World (1951), who almost kills everyone as he doesn’t care about human life but scientific discovery is what matters. Not to mention Dr. Alfred Brandon from I Was a Teenage Werewolf (1957), who experiments on teenage boy. And lets not forget Dr. Hannibal Lecter, who eats people. I could go on, but there are too many examples to choose from.
8) Do Not Spend the Night in an Abandoned or Haunted House, Psychiatric Hospital, or Carnival
I mean seriously. Just do not go there. Nothing good will ever, ever, ever come of it! I mean look at The Uninvited (1944), House on Haunted Hill (1959), House on Haunted Hill (1999), The Hunting (1963), The Haunting (1999), etc. I could go on and on, but let’s continue with our list.
9) If There is a Curse on Something Do Not Touch It
I know curses, many laugh at them; but of you are in a horror film and you see something that says it is cursed DON’T TOUCH IT! It is better to live another day then to have yourself face all kinds of horrors.
10) Do Not Drink Any Potions or Test An Experiment On Yourself
NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVER, EVER test a potion or try an experiment on yourself. It always ends badly! I mean you have Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde, The Fly, Batman’s Man-Bat he had to fight, even Goosebumps did an episode where the dad ended up creating a plant clone of himself. I know many don’t like animal testing or get under the stress of trying to accomplish something; but just stop! Don’t test yourself or else something bad will be created.
11) If There is a Murderer Running Around, Do Not Go Out and Party
This drives me crazy! A murderer is running around killing people and people decide to: 1) not take any precautions; 2) go about their lives like nothing is different; and 3) party. If there is a murderer running around, yes it is good to be in a group (rule 12 & 17) but you shouldn’t be out partying, drinking (rule 13) or putting yourself in a dangerous situation.
12) Never Split Up
NEVER, EVER, EVER go anywhere by yourself. There is power in numbers! As a group you could take a killer down, versus as a couple or single. When you split up, all you do us make it easier for someone to kill you.
While some of you might enjoy that type of thing it is never a good idea in a horror film. Anytime you try something that will keep you from thinking clearly, you are in serious trouble as you are likely to make bad decisions that will lead to your death. It is better to just say no.
If you are being attacked, threatened, harassed, etc.; call the police. Don’t try and take care of it yourself, don’t try to investigate, call FOR BACKUP! That’s their job!!! They have guns and can make an arrest!
Unlike the Terminator here, you won’t be back. Uttering these words is signing a death warrant, as soon as they leave your lips you become next on the killer/creature’s hit list.
16) Never Say “Who’s There?”
Never say “who’s there”. If the person was a friend, they wouldn’t be skulking around your house in the first place, trying to scare you. Instead they would knock, ring the doorbell, or call out to you. The only type of person who would be creeping in your house is one who intends on harming you. And if you call out “who’s there”, you’re just helping them find and kill you faster.
When you hear something strange outside, do not go out and look into it. You should wait for assistance or call in the police. If you try looking yourself, you are going to end up in a trap set by a monster, psychopath, murderer, etc. Besides, why unlock the door or turn off the alarm; allowing whatever is watching you the opportunity to come in and attack? Just stay inside snug like a bug.
Have you ever though of how vulnerable you are in the bathroom? Most have no windows to flee from or they aren’t the most accessible. Some do, but for most the only easy way out is the door, which is where most attackers will come through. Plus the reason you would be in the bathroom; shower or toilet, you won’t have any weapons to help you and it would be extremely easy to kill you. If you are in a horror film, just hold it or stay stinky. You are more likely to live that way.
Like I said before, the less people around you, the easier you are to kill. If you go off on your own to investigate, look around, run away; you are just putting a giant target on your back. Stay together, it is safer.
In horror movies, there are lots of people who have been bullied so much and hurt by others they end up becoming homicidal maniacs. And who do they tend to attack first? The last person to hurt them. Look at The Phantom of the Opera (any version), Carrie (1976), Hangman’s Curse (2003), Heathers (1985), etc. So if you don’t want to end up being first on the hit list be kind to those you meet.
22) If You Are a Girl Or Not White, Be Extra Cautious
Never judge a book by its cover. Someone who seems sweet, innocent, impossible to commit cruel acts, etc; could secretly have evil intentions lurking under the adorable facade. Always be watchful and once again, trust NO ONE!
When trying to figure out who the murderer is, never overlook kids. I mean sure some will be obvious in their creepiness, such as the one pictured above, but there are many who look innocent and sweet but are actually evil. Don’t be fooled!
NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVER try to create Life. It just does not go the way you plan. You can’t control the beasts you create and they just run amuck everywhere. I mean look at Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein, Jurassic Park, Jurassic World, Alien: Resurrection, the list goes on but I’ll stop here.
In any horror film, whenever they create life they always think they have complete control over it. Well, that never works out. You see, just because you made it doesn’t mean it will listen to you; every parent knows that. And more often than not, those creations will try and kill you.
28) If Someone Tries to Make a Deal with You to Kill Someone, Do Not Think it is a Joke
Joking around with the idea of murder might be something you would do with a friend, but be careful, you never know how far they might take it.
We all like to hear scary stories around a campfire and about areas. But if you are in a horror film, play very close attention as more often than not, the myths and legends turn out to be true or someone is copying them and making them true. It is always good to pay attention and know the details, it just might save your life.
30) Never Think You Have Destroyed a Monster, They Always Find a Way to Come Back
“You became that monster tonight not of your own accord. It will happen again.
It never will. I’m sure of it. I’ll conquer it!
Too late. You cannot conquer it. It has conquered you!”
So Horrorfest this year got off to a rough start. It’s not that I wasn’t excited for it or not eager to review horror films, I was just floundering. I wasn’t sure what to do for it, I mean after all last year was the best Horrorfest I have ever done. It was planned out way in advance, was half done by the time October rolled around, had a werewolf theme, etc. How could I top that? What could I do? Should I do another theme? I was just so unsure.
So I thought and thought and begin reviewing and planning a few things. I don’t know if this year will be as good as last years, but here we go!!!
After a looooooooong deliberation, I finally chose my final post. That left the first post which created an even looooooooooooooonger debate. But I finally picked, Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde.
So before we start the review, let me give you a little background information. This film is based on the novel, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and is set in Victorian England. It was turned into a play, in which the writer added in two love interests; and then adapted into a silent film in the 1920s. This version is the first with sound, and while similar to the book has made quite a few changes. This film came out in 1931, and is a Pre-Code film. That means this film came out before the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) was created and started rating things. So this film has a lot of things that wouldn’t be acceptable later to show on the big screen, in fact when they rereleased it in theaters they had to cut part of the film (added back in on VHS & DVD).
This film also had some different ways of filming (more on that later) and landed Fredric March an Oscar for his performance. This was back when the Academy wasn’t so hoity-toity, today they wouldn’t nominate anyone in a horror film unless it was for makeup, sound, or film editing.
The Academy SUCKS!
While in the book the story is told not through Dr. Jekykll, but his friend who discovers the whole story, they changed it so that all is through his point of view.
Anyways, lets begin the review.
So our film starts out with the credits and creepy organ music that sets the mood, and shivers down your spine!
We then are shown a pair of hands playing organ music. Oh early horror movies, you almost always had an organ in there somewhere.
Dr. Jekyll (Fredric March) continues to play when his butler tells him that he must leave soon if he is to reach his lecture hall in time and teach his lesson. Dr. Jekyll doesn’t want to quit his playing, but gets up to go.
Now here is one of the things that director Rouben Mamoulian did much, much differently. The camera angles for the first three minutes of the film are shot from Dr. Jekyll’s point of view, we don’t see his face.
I know. Very unusual but the effect works. We see him doing the mundane things and talking to his butler, but all I can think is what he looks like. I mean I know what Fredrich March looks like, but will he look the same here? Will they make him older like in the book? Will he be handsome? I just have got to see his face!!!!
And when we are finally shown it in the mirror:
Wow, what a hunk.
So after we are shown his face we go back to seeing through his eyes. Throughout the film while they switch back and forth between first person and observer point of view, the film is a majority from an observer/third point of view like most films.
So Dr. Jekyll heads to the University in his horse-drawn carriage. And one thing you notice right away, everyone likes or admires him. His butler, the carriage driver, the students think he’s spectacular, and even the older scholars enjoy his lectures and ideas.
So Dr. Jekyll begins his lecture and it is not what anyone has expected. Instead of discussing a part of the physical body, he chooses to discuss the Soul of Man. Dr. Jekyll defines that every person has two pieces to them. One side is constantly striving for the nobility of life, morals, i.e. the “Good side”. The other only cares for satisfying their desires and giving in to temptation, i.e. the “Bad side”.
Both are in an eternal struggle:
The Good side wants to be good all the time, but is constantly tempted to do evil. The Bad wants to do whatever it wants, but feels remorse at the things it does. Both are chained together, with one taking more control than the other, be it bad or good. What Dr. Jekyll proposes is to seperate the two, so that the bad can be destroyed and the good be the only left.
Everyone is appalled!What could he be thinking? Why would he even consider it?
In fact, Dr Jekyll has already started his experiment and research looks as if it could be possible.
After the lecture ends, people are split in how they feel about it. The young students laugh it off as a joke, split the soul in two, not even possible. The older attendees are in complete shock! How dare he blaspheme and cross into God’s territory!!!
Dr. Jekyll’s friend, Dr. Layon, warns him to give the whole thing up. That this will not end well at all for him. But Dr. Jekyll won’t listen, as he believes that science must push boundaries. There is no lines to consider, all is fair game.
Dr. Layon reminds Dr. Jekyll of the appointment they have with the Countess, but Dr. Jekyll tells him he’s not going, but heading to the poor’s hospital. Dr. Layon tells him that he must, certain things are expected of his caliber of gentlemen, but Dr. Jekyll refuses,
Dr. Jekyll: The things one can’t do are the things I want to.
So he goes to the hospital and helps a poor girl, put down her crutches and overcome her fear of walking. Dr. Jekyll would rather help someone who truly needs it, than a hypochondriac that just wants attention.
He is planning on operating on a woman, when Dr. Lanyon comes to bring him to dinner at General Carew’s house, with Jekyll’s fiancé Muriel. But Jekyll refuses dinner, saying he must operate now. So Dr. Lanyon leaves.
After dinner there is dancing and Muriel has had to do with other men, as Dr. Jekyll is still not there. He finally arrives, but Muriel is justifiably upset.
She quickly forgives him and they go off to the garden to talk. Here we see another side of Dr. Jekyll. He’s no longer the cool, collected, serious doctor; but giddy, adorable, and in love. In fact he wants to get married now.
It must be so strange for a genius who has been solely concentrated on science, logic, cold hard facts; to find himself with this sudden rush of emotion and desire. It’d be like if Sherlock Holmes met a woman he wanted to marry and have babies. So sudden, strange, and hard to control.
The General won’t let them marry immediately as he feels that such a short engagement would be indecent (hint: mean that his daughter is not a virgin, is pregnant, or has done other promiscuous/indecent things.) In his defense, he is trying to protect his daughter’s reputation, but this has disastrous results.
Dr. Jekyll is a man that once he gets an idea, strives constantly until he come to a conclusion or figured a solution to his problem. He isn’t used to “waiting”.
To make this even worse, this is a man who has denied himself any kind of passionate emotions. He has always strived to be a good person, but even more so, he has denied himself all emotions for logic, science, etc. Now Muriel has awakened a side of him that he had locked up and all these emotions are coming out.
It is something that Dr. Jekyll has no way of gageing or keeping in check. And instead of having the ability to wait or hold on, he wants it NOW!
Now as I mentioned before, in the book Dr. Jekyll isn’t engaged, his only love was knowledge, science, etc.: so this question only applies to the film. But if the General allowed them to get married now, would Dr. Jekyll have continued his quest for splitting the soul? Or would he have been too preoccupied with married life?
After Dr. Jekyll is shot down by the General, he and Dr. Layon leave. Dr. Jekyll is so angry and incensed that he is being denied. Why must we be unable to have the things we want?
He is so angry he thinks about strangling him.
While he and his friend are discussing this, he witnesses an altercation with a low-class woman and a low-class man. It might seem a little odd to us now to see such opulence next to such depravity, but a lot of cities were like that for a while, think of 42nd Street in New York, “where the underworld can meet the elite” [from musical 42nd Street].
The good doctor picks her up and carries her into her room. While the film never addresses it, or says exactly what she is, this woman, Ivy, is; but based on the way she acts (and the amount of men she is with) it is safe to say she is a prostitute. In later films and musicals, they make it more definite.
Anyways, when he gets her in bed, she shows him where the man hurt her, bruising her leg, and not just her leg but upper thigh. Yep, this where the liberties of the pre-code begin.
He tells her all she needs is rest, and Ivy insinuates she’d like him in bed with her.
He of course moves away from the bed, but Ivy hasn’t given up yet. She likes that he is a gentleman and gives him a strip tease before she gets into bed.
She sticks out her bare leg, BARE LEG, for Dr. Jekyll to examine as her knee is “broken”. When he comes over, she kisses him, and Dr. Jekyll doesn’t stop the kiss.
As they are kissing, his friend walks in. They leave, with Ivey swinging her leg back and forth and inviting Jekyll to come back anytime.
In fact as the two leave, her leg continues to swing back and forth over them slowly dissolving and showing how both men are still focused on it.
So the film presents these two women show the duality that Dr. Jekyll will become.
On one hand we have brunette Muriel, demure, sweet, kind, innocence, a lady: that has awoken feelings of love that he has never been aware of before. On the other hand we have the low class, brassy, blonde, who is highly sexual. She has awakened a lust in him and he wants her to satisfy his longing, but doesn’t want anymore than that.
So he and his friend leave, with his friend appalled at his actions.
Dr. Lanyon: Perhaps you’re forgetting, you’re engaged to Muriel.
Dr. Jekyll: Forgotten it? Can a man dying of thirst forget water? And do you know what would happen to that thirst if it were to be denied water?
Dr. Lanyon: If I understand you correctly, you sound almost indecent.
Now the problem in Dr. Jekyll’s case is not the Puritan viewpoints of the Victorian Era, a lot of people fall into that misconception. You see a man releasing his sexual drive with prostitutes was actually expected. Sex with a wife was viewed more for children, not “fun”. Dr. Jekyll’s problem is that he does not want to be a regular person who suffers from temptation and desire, he wants to be rid of it completely. He wants so badly to be perfectly good, hence all his charity work, and he wants to remove the ability to even “fall into sin”. Instead of having to make a choice, he wants to remove all need for morality as all would be good and make “good decisions.” He wants to be more than a mere, average, man.
The problem is that what he strives for is impossible, he is only setting himself up for failure and going to cause an extreme downfall.
Dr. Jekyll returns to his lab working day and night, not sleeping or eating, all in his quest to split the soul. He makes the potion and decides to test it on himself.
But in his defense, he does pen a letter telling Muriel he loves her and that he died in the pursuit of science.
If my love went this way, it wouldn’t make me happy but at least you know he was thinking of you.
So then he looks into the mirror and drinks the potion down.
As he is doing that, he goes through all those emotions he has been trying to ignore: wrath, lust, greed-they all swarm around him.
He looks in the mirror and we see this ugly thing. Now Dr. Jekyll was a tall, strong, good-looking man . This side hasn’t been used as much so he’s hunched, shorter, also doesn’t look as strong as Jekyll does. He’s more animalistic, apelike, covered in hair, large giant teeth.
Now something you might have noticed is the large amount of mirrors in this movie. There are so many to symbolize the duality of man. The mirror only shows the outside of a person, not their true inner self. The mirror is supposed to show our reflection, but sometimes people see only what they wish to see, not what is really there. The mirror is the only way we are able to see what everyone else sees, and a way in which we can construct what we want people to see in us.
I could go on longer, but let’s get back to the film.
So the first thing that his darker self, Mr. Hyde, does is cheer about how happy he is to be free. So long has Jekyll kept him crippled, living a good life, and denying the dark side. But now that he las let him out, will he be able to contain him again?
So Hyde is excited to be out and plans to roam the streets, when his butler knocks on the door. Hyde talks to him, but even though he is Dr. Jekyll, he doesn’t sound like him anymore. The butler is afraid and about to come in, so Dr. Jekyll changes back into his true self.
Dr. Jekyll has done it, he has actually done it.
But while he is pleased his experiment worked, at the same time he is afraid to let the dark side out. But it starts haunting him, tempting him.
He goes to Muriel to plead with her to marry him now. He is afraid that without her, he might make some very bad decisions. But Muriel and her father are leaving for a trip to Bath for a week.
Muriel asks him to wait for her, and he agrees, but you can see in his face he doesn’t really want to wait. What he really wants is to be satisfied NOW!
Dr. Jekyll is in a tizzy. That swinging leg is still in his mind, along with his potion and he is worried that without Muriel to remind him of what he truly wants, he may give into the temptation.
He then receives a letter from Muriel stating that their week trip, is turning into a month.
Dr. Jekyll has been sitting in his lab, moping and withdrawn from society and his patients. His butler is worried for him and tells him he should go out.
Butler Poole: You should go out, sir. London offers many amusements for a gentlemen like you, sir.
Dr. Jekyll: Yes, but gentlemen like me daren’t take advantage of them, Poole. Gentlemen like me have to be very careful of what we do or say.
Now Poole, the Butler, is trying to get Jekyll to go to the opera, museum, see a play, visit with friends, etc.: something not in the house. But Dr. Jekyll think of those things? No. Immediately his mind goes straight to sex. He cannot control this emotions, and I think that if he could just admit to himself that he is a man and has faults, instead of trying to make himself be perfect being he wouldn’t struggle as hard. Yes Dr. Jekyll, you are good, but just because you are good doesn’t mean that you don’t have flaws, you need to accept that.
And you know Dr. Jekyll could choose something else to do with his time, but that’s not what he wants. He wants to be with a woman. But he as Jekyll does not want to ruin his reputation, his good name, so instead he looks to another avenue.
Man this transformation looks so painful, I wouldn’t want to do it. This time he looks even uglier, more monstrous, brutish.
He goes after Ivy, the girl who has awakened his lust. She’s not home but out at the nearby tavern, so Hyde heads there. Even the way that he moves is brutish and apelike.
He meets up with Ivy:
So he tries to be a “gentlemen” as that is what Ivy wants, but can’t pull it off as Hyde as he is too dark in his actions.
He wants her to be his mistress and while Ivy refuses initially, Hyde makes it clear he gets what he wants.
He grabs her acting like an animal, and threatens her. Tells her he loves her but all he wants is sex. In reality he doesn’t love her, he’s attracted to her but wants a placeholder for Muriel.
In the next scene we see Ivy has agreed to being a kept woman, but not because she wants a nice home or things, but because she is scared out of her mind that Hyde will kill her.
Hyde comes to visit her, and we see that he is taller, standing upright, and much stronger looking then before. He is also uglier. It seems that Jekyll has been living Hyde more and more making him much stronger than the good Jekyll side.
As soon as Hyde enters the room, he heads straight to the bed, reading the paper. In there he notices that Muriel will be returning.
He forgot about that pesky fiancé of Jekyll, this means bad news for Hyde. Here we see that Dr. Jekyll has actually failed. He wanted to separate the two so that one can be destroyed and the good can only endure. But in fact that is not what has happened. Jekyll, when present is always conscious of his desires the Hyde. Hyde while bad and does what he wants, he too is conscious of the good Jekyll, not always choosing to follow. So he never split them, they still are in struggle, he just gave more of himself and power over to his dark side.
In fact the only real difference is that he feels okay being bad as he is not “Dr. Jekyll”. No one knows who he is, so he can do whatever he wants. Kind of like those people who get on the internet and feel free to do whatever as no one knows who they are.
Anyways, so Hyde makes sure Ivy doesn’t think about leaving him, being emotionally, verbally, and physically abusive to her.
Then he heads home as Dr. Jekyll wants out. Muriel is coming home, so he takes the potion and returns.
But we see all is not well, as his eyes are CRAZED. Dr. Jekyll is losing the war and Hyde is taking over.
He goes to Muriel who is upset that he hasn’t answered any of her letters. He apologizes and tells her he has been sick in mind. He begs her to marry him now instead of later as he NEEDS her. She agrees and the beg her father, who finally gives in. They invite him for dinner the next night, when they will announce to everyone that the two are to be married the next month.
Finally something GOOD!
Meanwhile, back in Ivy’s house, her landlady is helping tend to her wounds done by Hyde. Dr. Jekyll, feeling remorse for what has happened has sent over £60. Ivy isn’t sure who Dr. Jekyll is, as she didn’t now the name of the doctor who saved her earlier, but decides to see this man in the hopes he can stop Hyde.
Dr. Jekyll goes home, happy and plays the organ. And this time it isn’t light and airy, but dark and creepy. Hyde is still lurking, strong.
He is interrupted by Ivy who has come to see him. She begs him for help, ripping her top off to show him the whipping that Hyde gave her.
Heere Dr. Jekyll is forced to look at the consequences of his actions. He thought it would be okay to have the Hyde do what he wants, and Jekyll what he wants. But no, as both are a part of him, both are connected and cannot be separated.It was all an illusion to think so.
Jekyll promises Ivy that Hyde is gone forever, he will never bother her again. And Dr. Jekyll intends to keep it that way as he is to wed Muriel, he no longer needs Hyde.
He’s gone for good
But that’s where you are wrong Jekyll. You have given Hyde too much power, and now you will be unable to control him.
Dr. Jekyll walks to the General’s house for dinner when he spots a pretty robin singing. As he looks at him a cat eats him, which upsets Jekyll. And as that happens, Jekyll starts to become Hyde.
You see Hyde cannot easily be kept down and he does not want to be. Jekyll has given him too much power and liberties. All he needs is for Jekyll to feel dark things: anger, greed, lust, violence, etc and Hyde will come out.
I know some of you might be tired of all the Star Wars memes and quotes and think I need to cool my obsession, but in a way Star Wars is similar to Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde, particularly Anakin Skywalker. Dr. Jekyll is a man that doesn’t quite follow the rules. There is a moral code to science he should follow, but chooses to ignore it and continue in his experiment, one that ends up having him release his dark side and live out all those emotions and desires with no thought on how this will affect others. With Anakin, he too follows his own code as he doesn’t agree with all the Jedi rules. One of which is not to marry as the powers you have, when tied to emotions, can do some pretty bad things. Both people give into those darker sides, ultimately completely going over to the dark side.
Anyways, so now with Hyde out, he heads over to see Ivy. Hyde hates Dr. Jekyll, as Dr. Jekyll has kept him contained for so long, and still tries to imprison him. Ivy going to him is the ultimate betrayal, and for that she must die.
So as he is heading over there we get a great camera view. They split the screen so that in the upper left Hyde is heading off to get Ivy, and in the lower right, Muriel is waiting for Jekyll. As the camera pans in Muriel, we see that she not happy at all. Then Murial is in the lower left and Ivy is in the upper right, celebrating the end of Hyde.
Except Hyde is not quite finished:
Hyde kills her, but as he is escaping, the others in the building have heard what he has done and follow him.
Grab your torches and sharpen your pitchforks!
He sneaks to Dr. Jekyll’s house, but the butler won’t let him in. So he runs to the tavern and writes a note (as his handwriting is the same), asking his friend for chemicals and saying Hyde will pick up the package.
His friend follows the instructions, but when Hyde comes, he won’t let him leave, unless he promises to take him to see Dr. Jekyll. As Hyde can’t, although let’s be honest Dr. Jekyll is coming through in this moment as he wants to be changed back, and takes the potion, warning his friend about what he will see.
Mr. Hyde: Think before you decide, I tell you! Do you want to be left as you are, or do you want your eyes and your soul to be blasted by a sight that would stagger the devil himself?
When the Dr. Lanyon sees the transformation, he is in utter shock.
He tells him that he warned him not to do it, that he should have listened to him. Dr. Jekyll agrees, but says that he can control it now. That he will never, ever again become Hyde. Dr. Lanyon warns him that is not true. It is over, he is no longer in control.
Dr. Lanyon: You’re a rebel, and see what it has done for you. You’re in the power of this monster that you have created.
Dr. Jekyll: I’ll never take that drug again!
Dr. Lanyon: Yes, but you told me you became that monster tonight not of your own accord. It will happen again.
Dr. Jekyll: It never will. I’m sure of it. I’ll conquer it!
Dr. Lanyon: Too late. You cannot conquer it. It has conquered you!
They both agree that he must give Muriel up as he might kill her like he did Ivy. The next night he goes to Muriel and tells her that it is over.
But Muriel doesn’t want to end the relationship, she loves him. But Dr. Jekyll knows it is best to set her free. She tries to hug, him and he doesn’t want her too, as he is afraid it will release Hyde, He is completely broken in this scene as he loves her so much, but knows that any further involvement means death for her.
Dr. Jekyll: I have no soul. I’m beyond the pale. I’m one of the living dead!
She grabs him and they both sob, but then he leaves, and she continues to cry.
As she is indoors crying, Jekyll changes into Hyde, and Hyde sneaks into the house attacking her. When she screams her father and butler came after Hyde, who attacks both of them, beating the father.
He runs home to change back into Jekyll, but it is too late. Dr. Lanyon looks after the General and sees the broken cane Hyde dropped, recognizing it as Dr. Jekyll’s.
They return to his house accusing him of being the murderer. When Dr. Jekyll becomes scared and angry, he turns back into Hyde.
You can’t help but feel bad for Dr. Jekyll. He was a good man that wanted to do something for the good of all, but as they say: “The Road to Hell is paved with Good Intentions.”
So marks the first post of Horrorfest and there are many good movies coming along. Stay tuned!
As it has become a yearly tradition, my facebookcover/mini poster.
30 years ago, one of the best movies was released:
Yep this baby.
Now I know you all are thinking, but it says March 24, 1984. That’s the time in the movie, the film was actually released February 15, 1985.
This film was written by John Hughes in just two days and completely shot in sequence. What also is really interesting about this film is that Hughes actually allowed a lot of ab-libbing in the film. Such as Brian’s reason for a fake ID- “so I can vote”; the whole scene when they are in a circle sharing their feelings; and even the fist in the air by Judd Nelson at the end of the film. Now that last scene is extremely iconic, just like the song “Don’t You Forget About Me”. This song was especially written for the film and was turned down by a quite a few artists, like Billy Idol, to finally be performed by Simple Mind. Of course it became a huge hit for the band and is covered by millions, including Billy Idol. I guess he changed his mind.
So some of you many not be aware of the story, so here is a brief recap.
Five very different students have been sentenced with detention. We have Allison Reynolds (Ally Sheedy), “the basket case” who just came for fun; Andrew Clark (Emilio Estevez), “the athlete”, who received detention for bullying a kid; John Bender (Judd Nelson), “the criminal”, sent there because of his acting up; Claire Standish (Molly Ringwald), “the princess”, caught skipping school to go shopping; and Brian Johnson (Anthony Michael Hall), “the brain”, who brought a flare gun to school.
In the beginning everyone abides by their cliques, Claire and Andrew sit together as they are on the highest level of the totem pole, while the rest sit by themselves. At first they keep their distance and Bender riles everyone, but through the course of the day they all bond together sharing their most personal secrets and working out their dysfunctions.
Allison feels ignored and therefore is a compulsive liar and a klepto, seeking out attention. Andrew hates his overbearing father who is always pressuring him. That is one of the reasons why he was bullying another kid, his father said he wasn’t being manly enough. Bender is abused by his father and ignored the rest of the time. Claire feels confined by the role she is in, as everyone sees her a certain way when in reality she has hardly ever dated and is a virgin. Brian feels so pressured by his family to be perfect and get into a good college, that he contemplated suicide over getting a bad grade in woodshop. Through these discussions, everyone feels much better and is much happier. But at the same time they feel sad and scared that once they are back in school Monday they will no longer be friends and things will continue as they have before.
Before the day ends, they hook up the sound system and have a big dance. Claire and Bender pair up and so do Allison and Andrew. Poor Brian gets stuck writing their detention assignment.
In the end Claire gives Bender one of her diamond earrings so they’ll never forget that moment. Allison steals Andrew’s Captain letter and the two kiss, while Brian gets nothing (poor nerdy guy). And the film ends with Bender’s triumphant arm thrust and Simple Mind’s Don’t You Forget About Me playing in the background.
Now I love this movie. Like freaking love it.
And watch it over and over.
I mean how could you not love it and the messages it covers? First of all you see that labels are nothing, just things we create ourselves to make us feel accepted, when in fact there is a little of everything in all of us.
We all have insecurities:
And that we all are strange. Nobody’s perfect or has it all together.
Yep, I just love this film.
In fact, I am such a fangirl over it that in one of my college courses, a group of us became such great friends and were all so different, yet the same, that we named our collective “The Breakfast Club”. Yep, my fangirl was showing.
So of course being a huge fan, when I saw a quiz to see which character I was, I had to take it. And I got:
Now this surprised me as I would have thought I’d get the Basket Case, Brain, or Athlete before I ever got the Criminal. But, and you guys will laugh at this, a few weeks ago (and right after I took this quiz) I was watching this film with four other friends. We started teasing my friend Gabe that he was Brian the Brain. He started joking that our friend Stephanie was Allison the Basket Case. Then we all started pairing up people and characters. Laurence did sports so he became Andrew the Athlete. And even though Jack was a boy, we decided he was Claire the Princess, or Prince in his case. And that made me Bender the Criminal. In fact, that night I was wearing a plaid shirt, jeans, and black boots; not the exact ones Bender wears, but pretty darn close. Now whenever I see Jack, I always joke around that he’s my girlfriend, or woman as I feel Bender would say.
So this is one fantastic film that I strongly suggest you view. If you’ve never seen it, get a copy and do so as soon as possible. If you have, another thousand viewings is what I recommend. 🙂