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 ...Written by
The ceremony, in which Dr. Ferral is partaking halfway through the movie, is a Freemasonic initiation ritual. During this particular ritual, the candidate (Dr. Ferral) is initiated into the very first degree of Freemasonry called "Entered Apprentice". For this ritual, the candidate is stripped of all of his clothes, except his shirt, and is clothed in a pair of drawers kept in the lodge for the use of candidates. The candidate is then blindfolded - which masons refer to as "hoodwinking" - and a rope called a "Cable-tow" is hung around his neck. His left foot is bare, his right in a slipper, and his left breast and arm are naked. After a lengthy ritual, the candidate is finally ordered to kneel on his left knee, place his right hand on the square and compass, and raise his left hand in the air. He is then ordered to give the solemn oath of secrecy. In every ritual degree of Freemasonry, the candidate is required to take an oath, and is warned of the hideous and grotesque penalty that awaits him, if he dares ever to reveal any of the group's innermost secrets. In this first degree oath of Freemasonry, as is depicted in the movie, the candidate declares: "...binding myself under no less penalty than that of having my throat cut across, my tongue torn out by its roots, and my body buried in the rough sands of the sea, at low-water mark, where the tide ebbs and flows twice in twenty-four hours, should I ever knowingly violate this my Entered Apprentice obligation." See more »
Some of the constables and law enforcement officers shown in nighttime scenes are carrying flashlights, which were not patented until ten years after the film's date of 1888. See more »
[after trying to kiss Abberline and he refuses]
What? You think I was paying you back? I didn't mean it as business. I'm still a woman, they haven't taken that away from me, not yet anyways!
[Abberline proceeds to shove her against the wall and kiss her passionately]
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Why is it Americans have a laughably ethnocentric view of Britain ? They seem to be under the impression that each and every person of the United Kingdom is a cockney who says " Cor blimey Guv " a lot and works as a chimney sweep . In fact the only people we see in American movies who aren`t cockneys are the royal family ! Even BAND OF BROTHERS suffers from this flaw and that was a BBC co-production ! I must admit that it was nice to see the producers FROM HELL did their homework on 19th century London - By watching MARY POPPINS over and over again
Not having a time machine I`ve never been to 1888 London but can`t help thinking the ethnic make of the city is all wrong with everyone talking with a cockney accent , wouldn`t London be full of Scots and Irish swapping their Scottish and Irish slums for one in London ? Just curious because everyone with the exception of Robbie Coltrane`s character is either a cockney or a former public schoolboy , and of course by casting a bunch of native Brits you can`t help notice how bad the accents coming from Johnny Depp and Heather Graham are . Depp especially is abysmal
As the film continues you still notice the annoying accents but other irritants force their way into the movie . Despite having characters that existed in real life they`re written beyond all recognition , for instance Inspector Abberline had visions of the killings like some sort of psychic ? I don`t think so , oh and that bit with the diversion at Special Branch didn`t happen either and there`s no evidence he had a relationship with Mary Kelly or that any of the victims knew each other . Talking of Mary Kelly I was going to point out that , physically at least , that the real life Mary Kelly does not in any way resemble the one seen here but being an American film you`ve got to excuse some artistic license where glamour is involved
Actually this glamour jars with the opening of the film which shows the London of 1888 being a human hell hole with drunkeness and drug addiction being the norm . Strangely this actually correct , in those days drugs weren`t outlawed and a great many people took all types of drugs that would now be called " Class A drugs "( Including Queen Victoria ) though there`s no evidence Inspector Abberline was a user , so once again it`s disappointing to see so much historical inaccuracy involved especially The Rippers motivations . I can`t disprove the theories put forward but do empires collapse like this ? In my opinion - No . Oh and talking of The Ripper it`s very very obvious who he is when he first opens his mouth about twenty minutes into the movie because you`ll be able to recognise the actor`s voice straight away
So FROM HELL could have been a very good movie , but alas it`s not
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