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Gothic (1986)

R | | Horror | 10 April 1987 (USA)
The Shelleys visit Lord Byron and compete to write a horror story.

Director:

Ken Russell

Writers:

Lord Byron (story), Percy Bysshe Shelley (story) | 1 more credit »
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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Gabriel Byrne ... Byron
Julian Sands ... Shelley
Natasha Richardson ... Mary Shelley
Myriam Cyr ... Claire Clairmont
Timothy Spall ... Dr. Polidori
Alec Mango ... Murray
Andreas Wisniewski ... Fletcher
Dexter Fletcher ... Rushton
Pascal King Pascal King ... Justine
Tom Hickey Tom Hickey ... Tour Guide
Linda Coggin Linda Coggin ... Turkish Mechanical Woman
Kristine Landon-Smith Kristine Landon-Smith ... Mechanical Woman
Chris Chappell Chris Chappell ... Man in Armour (as Chris Chappel)
Mark Pickard Mark Pickard ... Young William
Kiran Shah ... Fuseli Monster
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Storyline

Story of the night that Mary Shelley gave birth to the horror classic "Frankenstein." Disturbed drug induced games are played and ghost stories are told one rainy night at the mad Lord Byron's country estate. Personal horrors are revealed and the madness of the evening runs from sexual fantasy to fiercest nightmare. Mary finds herself drawn into the sick world of her lover Shelley and cousin Claire as Byron leads them all down the dark paths of their souls. Written by Susan Southall <stobchatay@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Conjure up your deepest, darkest fear... now call that fear to life.

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 April 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Готика See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$916,172
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Virgin Vision See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Other works of literature mentioned in the film are "The Castle of Otranto" by Horace Walpole (regarded as the first Gothic novel), "Vathek" by William Beckford, and "The Monk" by Matthew Lewis, another gothic novel about a corrupt priest. See more »

Goofs

Claire Clairmont (Myriam Cyr) falls out of the rowboat in the opening scene, but just a few seconds later, as she's running with Percy toward the house, her clothes and hair are totally dry. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Tour Guide: And there, ladies and gentlemen, on the other side of the lake we have the famous Villa Diodati where Lord Byron, greatest living English poet, resides in exile. Romantic, scholar, duelist, best-selling author of Childe Harold, he was forced to leave his native land after many scandals including incest and adultery with Lady Caroline Lamb. "Mad, bad and dangerous to know" she called him.
[the guide squeezes a lady's hand and points]
Tour Guide: Bedroom - top right.
See more »

Alternate Versions

American versions contain a title-card before the credits. This title card contains Mary Shelley's quote from the foreword to Frankenstein where she discusses the night the movie centers around. A brief explanation is then provided mentioning that both Frankenstein and Dracula were born on that night. See more »

Connections

Version of Rowing with the Wind (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

I Wish I Was a Maid Again" (uncredited)
Traditional
Arranged and Performed by Gaynor Sadler and Tony Sadler
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Do What You Want!
17 January 2007 | by HitchcocSee all my reviews

I guess if you were Ken Russell in 1986, riding a crest of weirdity, you can do just about anything you want. I think that Russell was the first really wacko film director I got to know. I hadn't watched anything of his for a long time. This is one of those things that allows this director to take complete license. You have true historical figures who come together in the house of Lord Byron, a really colorful character. The lives of these people come out of boredom. They are misunderstood and a bit spoiled. So, according to Russell, they sit down one night and begin to tell their best horror story. This leads to a series of debauches, hallucinations, whatever. It is filled with images and sex and masochism and anything that the director could throw in there. Now, because you are producing in an accepting time, you can get away with all that. I guess I would watch this again, knowing what the whole of the thing presents, but when you play by no rules other than to do what you want, the results are like throwing paint on a canvass. We get a lot of paint, a lot of color, but no motif. So, while I thought this was a real head trip, I'm not so sure there is much coherence or even meaning to it.


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