In Victorian-era London, a troubled clairvoyant police detective investigates the murders of Jack the Ripper.

Directors:

Albert Hughes (as The Hughes Brothers), Allen Hughes (as The Hughes Brothers)

Writers:

Alan Moore (graphic novel), Eddie Campbell (graphic novel) | 2 more credits »
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2,989 ( 327)
15 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Johnny Depp ... Inspector Frederick Abberline
Heather Graham ... Mary Kelly
Ian Holm ... Sir William Gull
Robbie Coltrane ... Sergeant Peter Godley
Ian Richardson ... Sir Charles Warren
Jason Flemyng ... Netley, the Coachman
Katrin Cartlidge ... Dark Annie Chapman
Terence Harvey ... Benjamin 'Ben' Kidney
Susan Lynch ... Liz Stride
Paul Rhys ... Dr. Ferral
Lesley Sharp ... Kate Eddowes
Estelle Skornik Estelle Skornik ... Ada
Nicholas McGaughey Nicholas McGaughey ... Officer Bolt
Annabelle Apsion ... Polly Nichols
Joanna Page ... Ann Crook
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Storyline

It is 1888 in London, and the unfortunate poor lead horrifying lives in the city's deadliest slum, Whitechapel. Harassed by gangs and forced to walk the streets for a living, Mary Kelly and her small group of companions trudge on through this daily misery, their only consolation being that things can't get any worse. Yet things somehow do when their friend Ann is kidnapped and they are drawn into a conspiracy with links higher up than they could possibly imagine. The kidnapping is soon followed by the gruesome murder of another woman, Polly, and it becomes apparent that they are being hunted down, one by one. Sinister even by Whitechapel standards, the murder grabs the attention of Inspector Fred Abberline, a brilliant yet troubled man whose police work is often aided by his psychic abilities. Abberline becomes deeply involved with the case, which takes on personal meaning to him when he and Mary begin to fall in love. But as he gets closer to the truth, Whitechapel becomes more and ...

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Taglines:

Only the legend will survive.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence/gore, sexuality, language and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Heather Graham started dating Heath Ledger during the making of this movie, shot on adjacent soundstages in Prague to A Knight's Tale (2001) which Ledger was making at the same time. See more »

Goofs

The size of the chalk letters with the word Juwes written on it changes shape from when Abberline points it out to the time the constables wipe the chalk board clean. See more »

Quotes

Jack the Ripper: Why have you called me here, Netley.
Netley, the Coachman: It's just... you say only three more have to be killed. I don't know if I can do it anymore. It's in all the papers. I'm just a simple chap, sir. I'm not a great man like you. I just don't know where I am anymore.
Jack the Ripper: There, there Netley. I shall tell you where we are. We're in the darkest region of the human brain, a radiant abyss where men go to find themselves.
Netley, the Coachman: I don't understand, sir.
Jack the Ripper: Hell, Netley. We are in hell.
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Crazy Credits

Thanks to the Megerdichian family See more »

Alternate Versions

Three endings were filmed: one where Abberline dies of a drug overdose in London, one where he travels to the Far East and dies of an overdose in an Opium Den and one where he sneaks off to be with Mary. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Richard Roeper & the Movies: The Book of Eli (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Duke Street
Written by John Hatton
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User Reviews

 
A psychotropic thriller
9 January 2002 | by kmbergerSee all my reviews

There are many things in media that have nearly insurmountable preconceptions that lead to generic truisms. One of these is 'comic books are pure fluff,' and another is 'no good movie is ever based on a comic book'.

From Hell is a project that takes both of those truisms and tosses them completely out the window. Based on an ambitious graphic novel written by Alan Moore and illustrated by Eddie Campbell, From Hell (named for the signature on the Jack the Ripper letters written to the police), is one man's carefully researched theory into the eternal mystery surrounding the Whitechapel murders of 1888.

This is not a factual display of guilt or innocence, as many of the answers behind these crimes will never be known, but as theory mixed with fact, it creates with chilling detail the mood of lower-class London in the late nineteenth century, where life was cheap, bloody and oftentimes short.

The Hughes brothers, noted for their stylish direction, do a very good job of creating the mood here, involving all the grunginess and hopelessness of the streets, and combining the more mystical elements of Moore's story into the crime tale. Johnny Depp is Inspector Abberline - an opium-smoking criminal investigator that often follows up on hunches he receives during moments of hallucinatory revelation.

The style of the film - dripping with violent murder of prostitutes in alleyways - leaves more to the imagination than it reveals, although the gore level is by no means light. The vicious throat-slashes and bloody crime scenes are definitely grotesque, but most of the time we are shown the crime after the fact, letting the viewer decide how horrible the murder itself was.

All the performances are strong, fitting together into an ensemble piece, with Depp being as much a chameleon as ever as Abberline, and Robbie Coltrane equally strong as his colleague Godfrey. Ian Holm, Heather Graham, and Ian Richardson also provide good supporting roles.

For an historical perspective of the Jack the Ripper crimes, best to watch an A&E documentary. But for a theoretical description of the crimes, and an artful depiction of a carefully constructed tale, definitely check out the very chilling, very calculated, and very good From Hell.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA | Czech Republic | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 October 2001 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Jack See more »

Filming Locations:

Czech Republic See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,014,818, 21 October 2001

Gross USA:

$31,602,566

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$74,558,115
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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