The Elephant Man (1980) UK
The Elephant Man Image Cover
Additional Images
Director:David Lynch
Producer:Jonathan Sanger, Stuart Cornfeld, Mel Brooks
Writer:Sir Frederick Treves, Ashley Montagu
Date Added:2007-08-05
Purchased On:2007-05-08
Awards:Nominated for 8 Oscars. Another 8 wins & 13 nominations
Picture Format:Widescreen
Aspect Ratio:2.35:1
Languages:English, Dolby Digital 5.1, English, Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround, French, Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono
Features:Black & White
David Lynch  ...  (Director)
Sir Frederick Treves, Ashley Montagu  ...  (Writer)
Kenny Baker  ...  
Kathleen Byron  ...  
Fanny Carby  ...  
Gerald Case  ...  
Claire Davenport  ...  Fat Lady
Anthony Hopkins  ...  Dr. Frederick Treves
John Hurt  ...  John Merrick (The Elephant Man)
Anne Bancroft  ...  Mrs. Kendal
John Gielgud  ...  Carr Gomm
Wendy Hiller  ...  Mothershead
Freddie Jones  ...  Bytes
Michael Elphick  ...  Night Porter
Hannah Gordon  ...  Mrs. Anne Treves
Helen Ryan  ...  Princess Alex
John Standing  ...  Dr. Fox
Dexter Fletcher  ...  Bytes's Boy
Lesley Dunlop  ...  Nora
Phoebe Nicholls  ...  Merrick's Mother
Pat Gorman  ...  Fairground Bobby
Comments: I am not an animal! I am a human being! man!

Summary: You could only see his eyes behind the layers of makeup, but those expressive orbs earned John Hurt a well-deserved Oscar nomination for his moving portrayal of John Merrick, the grotesquely deformed Victorian-era man better known as The Elephant Man. Inarticulate and abused, Merrick is the virtual slave of a carnival barker (Freddie Jones) until dedicated London doctor Frederick Treves (Anthony Hopkins in a powerfully understated performance) rescues him from the life and offers him an existence with dignity. Anne Bancroft costars as the actress whose visit to Merrick makes him a social curiosity, with John Gielgud and Wendy Hiller as dubious hospital staffers won over by Merrick. David Lynch earned his only Oscar nominations as director and cowriter of this somber drama, which he shot in a rich black-and-white palette, a sometimes stark, sometimes dreamy visual style that at times recalls the offbeat expressionism of his first film, Eraserhead. It remains a perfect marriage between traditional Hollywood historical drama and Lynch's unique cinematic eye, a compassionate human tale delivered in a gothic vein. The film earned eight Oscar nominations in all, and though it left the Oscar race empty-handed, its dramatic power and handsome yet haunting imagery remain just as strong today. --Sean Axmaker