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The Doors (1991)

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The story of the famous and influential 1960s rock band The Doors and its lead singer and composer, Jim Morrison, from his days as a UCLA film student in Los Angeles, to his untimely death in Paris, France at age 27 in 1971.

Director:

Oliver Stone

Writers:

Randall Jahnson (as J. Randal Johnson), Oliver Stone
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2,366 ( 546)
3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Val Kilmer ... Jim Morrison
Meg Ryan ... Pamela Courson
Kyle MacLachlan ... Ray Manzarek
Frank Whaley ... Robby Krieger
Kevin Dillon ... John Densmore
Michael Wincott ... Paul Rothchild
Michael Madsen ... Tom Baker
Josh Evans ... Bill Siddons
Dennis Burkley ... Dog
Billy Idol ... Cat
Kathleen Quinlan ... Patricia Kennealy
John Densmore ... Engineer - Last Session
Gretchen Becker ... Mom
Jerry Sturm ... Dad
Sean Stone ... Young Jim
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Storyline

Oliver Stone's homage to 1960s rock group The Doors also doubles as a biography of the group's late singer, the "Electric Poet" Jim Morrison. The movie follows Morrison from his days as a film student in Los Angeles to his death in Paris, France at age 27 in 1971. The movie features a tour-de-force performance by Val Kilmer, who not only looks like Jim Morrison's long-lost twin brother, but also sounds so much like him that he did much of his own singing. It has been written that even the surviving Doors had trouble distinguishing Kilmer's vocals from Morrison's originals. Written by Denise P. Meyer <dpm1@cornell.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Ultimate Story of Sex, Drugs & Rock 'N' Roll See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for heavy drug content, and for strong sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 March 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Les Doors See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$38,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$9,151,800, 3 March 1991

Gross USA:

$34,416,893

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$34,416,893
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (analog 70 mm prints)| CDS (digital 35 mm and 70 mm prints)| Dolby SR (analog 35 mm prints)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The scene where Jim Morrison smashes a television set in the recording studio actually happened in real-life. Ray Manzarek describes it vividly in his autobiography "Light My Fire". See more »

Goofs

The home movie camera used by the Doors is a super-8 sound model manufactured in the late 1970s. See more »

Quotes

Ray Manzarek: [Imitating Bob Dylan's singing voice] Johnny's in the basement mixing up the medicine, I'm on the pavement thinking about the government.
See more »

Alternate Versions

A special edition of the movie was released in 1997 on laserdisc with additional scenes that were cut from the movie:
  • A scene taking place circa 1965 with Jim Morrison (Kilmer) jamming onstage with Ray's band, adding obscene lyrics to the Van Morrison song "Gloria."
  • 2 additional scenes of a bearded Jim reciting poetry in the recording studio.
  • Additional footage of Jim singing "The Unknown Soldier" at the New Haven concert.
  • A scene of Jim getting roughed up and harrassed in jail by police officers after being arrested at the New Haven concert.
  • Jim in his hotel room with 2 young women and Pam (Meg Ryan) yelling at him from outside.
  • Additional footage in the scene where Jim is on an airplane en route to Miami.
  • Additional scene at the end with Jim and Ray (Kyle Machlachlan) walking around Venice and talking before he departs for Paris.
  • Jim and Pam talking in the airplane en route to Paris.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Nostalgia Critic: Jack (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

California Sun
Written by Morris Levy / Henry Glover
Performed by The Rivieras
Published by Windswept Pacific Entertainment Co. d/b/a Longitude Music Co. (BMI)
Courtesy of Epic Records
by Arrangement with Original Sound Entertainment
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A refreshing cinematic breakthrough in an era in which cinema seems all but forgotten!
3 December 2000 | by famsmithSee all my reviews

This film is truly a gem. The Doors is easily the best film of the rock n' roll genre and at least one of the most important films of its era. Though I am not an Oliver Stone fan I must give credit where it is due. Stone really does a terrific job with this film, and shows what he is capable of when he actually knows about the subject he is attempting to comment on. A few of the scenes in the film are almost exact recreations of actual events. However, the magnificent thing about this film is that it manages to recreate a certain amount of reality while simultaneously realizing that for a film to possess its own vitality it must transcend the preexisting reality, move beyond the surface, beyond everything that is obvious, and express and explore something deeper. Val Kilmer delivers a powerful performance in which he almost seems to be channeling the energy of Jim Morrison, and though I've seen many of Meg Ryan's films this is the only one I can recollect where she does such a good job that she makes you really forget about her and focus on the character. The cinematography of the film by Robert Richardson (Platoon, Wall Street, Born on The Fourth of July, Natural Born Killers, Casino, Bringing out the Dead, and many more) is bold and unique making the film one of the most distinct visual films I've ever seen. This film is truly one of a kind, and breaks through into new cinematic territory, giving priority to the visual aspects of the film in an era where there are so few films that even give much consideration to the single most important aspect of the motion picture. The genius of this film is that it is visual-audio as opposed to audio-visual and is more concerned with expressing something than simply impressing the audience. The Doors is a refreshing cinematic breakthrough in an era in which cinema seems all but forgotten.


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