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The Doctor and the Devils
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- Includes anamorphic widescreen and full-screen formats
Top Customer Reviews
The story, set in the 19th century, features Dalton as Doctor Thomas Rock, a teacher of anatomy in a prominent London medical school. Seems Dr. Rock has a problem in getting the teaching materials necessary to conduct his lectures...and by teaching materials, I mean fresh corpses. You see, back in the day it was believed that after death, one needed all his (or her) parts in order to appease Saint Peter and gain passage through the Pearly Gates, so much so the only corpses allowed for use in such manner, by law, were those of convicted criminals executed by the gooberment, the thinking being, I guess, that is if someone was heinous and deserving enough to be executed, there was no question as to the destination of their departed soul.Read more ›
Dylan Thomas' classic script, written thirty-two years before the film was made (and reworked by Ronald Harwood in the interim) gets the all-star treatment in Francis' 1985 telling of the tale. Francis was best known as a cinematographer (and won two Oscars in that capacity), but he was no slouch in the directors' chair, either; he contributed to some of Britain's most enduring horror flicks over the years, including Day of the Triffids and Dr. Terror's House of Horrors. This is a bit lower-key than his usual excursions into horror, and that is not at all a bad thing.
Based loosely on the tale of Burke and Hare, The Doctor and the Devils revolves around Dr. Rock (Timothy Dalton), a rather unpopular anatomist who is convinced he can cure all the world's ills as long as he has enough raw material to experiment with. A noble sentiment, to be sure, but it does lead his "assistants", the grave robbers Fallon (Jonathan Pryce) and Broom (Stephen Rea), to resort to more extreme measures in order to find a steady supply of bodies. Meanwhile, Rock's eager assistant Murray (Julian Sands) is learning that being a doctor is all about treating the whole patient--something he seems especially eager to do with a streetwalker named Jennie (Twiggy).
Dalton, Pryce, and Rea all turn in very good performances, and the rest of the cast support them quite nicely; this is a film that is crowded with good performances. Francis does a fine turn as a director here as well, and the whole thing gels quite nicely. This one has unjustly faded into obscurity over the quarter-century since its release; like many of the mid-eighties gothic horror flicks that came out around this time, these days it qualifies as a hidden gem. If you find a dusty copy on your video store shelf, it's well worth checking out. *** ½
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Worth seeing for fans of Timothy Dalton, as I am. Not for the squeamish. Improves upon Dylan Thomas' original screenplay, which I recommend reading beforehand!!!!Published 3 months ago by Ian M.
I bought this VHS because the main character is named Thomas Rock, and my maiden name is Rock. My brother is Thomas Rock, and some of the other characters have first names that we... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Susan Gower
THE DOCTOR & THE DEVILS is one of the best examples of a movie that I didn't appreciate the first time I saw it. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Chip Kaufmann
Although The Doctor And The Devils isn't bottom-of-the-barrel bad, and has a terrific cast, it pales considerably when compared to The Flesh And The Fiends. Read morePublished on May 20, 2013 by John H. McCarthy
This movie is not for light family entertainment.
If you know that going in, you will find it fascinating, sad and excellent all at the same time. Read more
LIKED DALTON BUT STORY SEEM UNFINISHED NOT ENOUGH INFO ABOUT PERSONS LIKE SOMETHING SLAPPED TOGETHER IN ONE DAY COULD HAVE BEEN GOOD STORY IF DONE RIGHTPublished on November 3, 2011 by scarlet
I knew when I read the back of the DVD what I was in for with this movie. To make things short, this is an almost scene for scene remake of "The Flesh and the Fiends" film also... Read morePublished on October 7, 2007 by The Keeper
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