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Angel Heart (1987)

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A private investigator is hired by a man who calls himself Louis Cyphre to track down a singer named Johnny Favorite. But the investigation takes an unexpected and somber turn.

Director:

Alan Parker

Writers:

William Hjortsberg (novel), Alan Parker (screenplay)
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Popularity
2,609 ( 10)
2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mickey Rourke ... Harry Angel
Robert De Niro ... Louis Cyphre
Lisa Bonet ... Epiphany Proudfoot
Charlotte Rampling ... Margaret Krusemark
Stocker Fontelieu Stocker Fontelieu ... Ethan Krusemark
Brownie McGhee Brownie McGhee ... Toots Sweet
Michael Higgins ... Dr. Albert Fowler
Elizabeth Whitcraft Elizabeth Whitcraft ... Connie
Eliott Keener Eliott Keener ... Det. Sterne
Charles Gordone Charles Gordone ... Spider Simpson
Dann Florek ... Herman Winesap
Kathleen Wilhoite ... Nurse
George Buck George Buck ... Izzy
Judith Drake ... Izzy's Wife
Gerald Orange Gerald Orange ... Pastor John (as Gerald L. Orange)
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Storyline

Harry Angel has a new case, to find a man called Johnny Favourite. Except things aren't quite that simple and Johnny doesn't want to be found. Let's just say that amongst the period detail and beautiful scenery, it all gets really really nasty. Written by David Carroll <davidc@atom.ansto.gov.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It will scare you to your very soul. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | Canada | USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

6 March 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Corazón satánico See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$17,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,688,721, 8 March 1987, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$17,185,632
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

"Johnny Favorite" is probably a name version for John the Apostle, one of the twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ. John the Apostle wrote the fourth Gospel, and is also the one who stood with Mary under Jesus' cross during the crucifixion. Hence "The Church Fathers consider him the same person as John the Evangelist, John of Patmos, and the Beloved Disciple" (1), or the "favorite". Since this movie is a story involving religion and the battle of good versus evil, Johnny Favorite may have been used as a Biblical name to add effect on the storyboard. However, there is a big difference between the Biblical Johnny Favorite, or John the Apostle, and this film's Johnny Favorite, as the latter is certainly one who did not associate generally with religion, and specifically with Christianity, but more so to black magic and Satanic deals to reach stardom. (1) - source, Wikipedia. See more »

Goofs

The credit for "Extras Casting" is misspelled without the first T as "Exras Casting". See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Louis Cyphre: Johnny. Johnny. Johnny.
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Crazy Credits

After the end credits roll, you hear the whisper on a black screen, "Harry? Johnny?" See more »

Alternate Versions

A scene featuring Mickey Rourke and Lisa Bonet having sex was slightly cut by around 10 secs before release in order to avoid a X rating. The European theatrical version and US video version restore the missing footage. See more »

Connections

Featured in Trailer Trauma 3: 80s Horrorthon (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Basin Street Blues
By Spencer Williams
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Matures with age and grows on audiences and film connoisseurs alike!
7 December 2007 | by luke-346See all my reviews

I'm glad I caught this because what was seen by many as a poor film in 1987 can only be seen as great film in 2007. Angel Heart is one of those films that matures with age and grows on audiences and film connoisseurs alike. A psychological horror/thriller is one of the hardest genres for a director to prosper in but if you were to mix in spiritual and religious elements along with a heap of film noir, a touch of romance and a smidgen of jazz then you would set yourself a near impossible task, nevertheless it would be a task in which Alan Parker would succeed.

The direction of this film is masterful as Parker engages us through a meticulous atmosphere littered with mysterious allegories, gut rendering paranoia and an unmatched sense of place. This unmatched sense of place is a symptom of his stark imagery and sombre lighting which is played out through an amalgamation of film noir and the focal iconography of 50s and 60s French New Wave (the use of elevators, ceiling fans, staircases etc).

For many of these reasons and more Angel Heart is a very influential film and its inspirations can be seen in many of the psychological thrillers/horrors released in the past 20 years, it is thought provoking and at times a lot more disturbing than any of its genre equivalents. The multi-faceted love scene in the film is one such example, it plays very well as it is cleverly interspersed with a host demonic echelons which (given its style and narrative position) I believe to be unparallelled, even in contemporary cinema.

Overall Angel Heart is a very well paced and well acted film – although initially I felt that having Mickey Rourke in the lead role was a poor choice (based on his more recent work) but clearly he was at his acting best in his younger days almost Oscar-worthy, Robert De Niro is also on form as is the young Lisa Bonet – but these performances combined with everything else make Angel Heart a film that will stick with you, not as much as Midnight Express or Mississippi Burning (dir. Alan Parker), but enough to make you ponder why this film wasn't so successful upon its initial release and enough to curse why he didn't spend more time dabbling in the psychological/horror genre.


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