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The Autopsy of Jane Doe (2016)

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A father and son, both coroners, are pulled into a complex mystery while attempting to identify the body of a young woman, who was apparently harboring dark secrets.

Director:

André Øvredal
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Popularity
1,356 ( 224)
7 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Brian Cox ... Tommy
Emile Hirsch ... Austin
Ophelia Lovibond ... Emma
Michael McElhatton ... Sheriff Burke
Olwen Catherine Kelly ... Jane Doe (as Olwen Kelly)
Jane Perry ... Lieutenant Wade
Parker Sawyers ... Trooper Cole
Mary Duddy Mary Duddy ... Irene Daniels
Mark Phoenix Mark Phoenix ... Louis Tannis
Sydney Sydney ... Stanley the Cat
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Storyline

Cox and Hirsch play father and son coroners who receive a mysterious homicide victim with no apparent cause of death. As they attempt to identify the beautiful young "Jane Doe," they discover increasingly bizarre clues that hold the key to her terrifying secrets.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Every body has a secret.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for bloody horror violence, unsettling grisly images, graphic nudity, and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Site [Japan]

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 December 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Autopsy of Jane Doe See more »

Filming Locations:

London, England, UK See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Atmos

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The Norwegian director André Øvredal was inspired to do a horror movie after attending a screening of The Conjuring (2013). He immediately called his agent and told them that they should try and find a good horror script for him. A month later they showed him this script and he was immediately interested. See more »

Goofs

Just before Austin writes the Roman numerals on the chalk board, you can see the faded lines of "X" and "I" in the very place Austin is about to write, indicating that the set of Roman numerals was written there prior and erased, likely during scene blocking or an outtake. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Trooper Cole: Sheriff, you gotta get down here.
Sheriff Burke: We got an ID on her?
Trooper Cole: No, sir. No relation to Paul and Carol.
Lieutenant Wade: Who's she?
Sheriff Burke: Well, for now, she's a Jane Doe.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of the "Special thanks" section, the last entry is the single word: "Troll". André Øvredal's previous feature film was Trollhunter (2010). See more »

Connections

References The Notebook (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Farming Man
Written by Michael Richard Hendrix
Performed by Tennessee River Crooks
Courtesy of Fervor Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A brilliant premise tackled by the visionary director of Trollhunter
4 August 2017 | by shreyanhotaSee all my reviews

The title and poster of the movie give a creepy and uneasy feeling to the prospective watcher, and the same creepy atmosphere is wonderfully evident from the start of this well-executed, well-acted offering from the Norwegian director who gave us the thoroughly underrated Trollhunter. This time, he opted for conventional filmmaking instead of the found-footage style he so deftly utilized in Trollhunter, giving us time to take in the brilliantly directed scenes which immediately thrusts the audience into the unsettling premise of a Jane Doe being autopsied by a father-and-son coroner duo.

The dialogue between the leads in the beginning build character almost instantaneously, and they feel real from the get-go. Compared to the recent trend of horror movies eschewing character development for cardboard cutout jump-scare fuel, this movie comes as a nice and refreshing, almost surprising, change of pace. The father and the son have contrasting personalities regarding their approach to autopsies. I expected this brilliancy in dialogue and character development to carry the whole movie - and it immediately increased my expectations of the movie; I fully expected this to be an underrated horror gem of 2016.

Alas, however, half-way through the movie the director's Conjuring-esque influences seemed to show through the cracks. Though not devolving straight into jump-scare territory, the movie dips its feet into schlock scares now and then, which has a very infuriating effect on the viewer who, until now, has been amazed by the movie's restraint. The character development also suffers, with some actions by the leads contradicting their motivations.

However, the concept and execution need to be commended. The actors Brian Cox and Emile Hirsch do well to sell the dread and claustrophobia experienced by the characters. Special mention to Olwen Kelly, who gives possibly the best performance of the movie, despite having no lines, no action (she plays the corpse). Definitely one of the highlights of the movie was the synergy between the camera-work and the actress's facial expressions which do more to put the viewer at unease than minute-long scenes of staring into the darkness, fully knowing the movie is going to go for that cheap jump-scare. That being said, I would say the script was the weakest aspect of the movie, the ending just leaves you wanting a little bit more, and slightly disappointed. Nevertheless, the movie does its job of selling you the premise and executing it well enough to leave you unsettled for a few days.

All in all, I would call this movie as a mixed bag, though I would give it a glowing recommendation as it is head and shoulders above the spate of incomprehensible scare-fests being offered by Hollywood these days. Great work, André Øvredal.

Be sure to check out Trollhunter by the same director. Although not a horror film, it merges the found-footage genre with goofy mythical creatures to amazingly hilarious yet epic results.


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