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Docteur Jekyll et les Femmes

The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Miss Osbourne
Le cas estrange du Dr. Jekyll et de Miss Osbourne / Bloodbath of Doctor Jekyll / Dr. Jekyll and His Women / Dr. Jekyll and His Wives / The Blood of Dr. Jekyll / The Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Lady Osbourne

France/West Germany 1981
produced by
Ralph Baum, Robert Kuperberg, Jean-Pierre Labrande
directed by Walerian Borowczyk
starring Udo Kier, Marina Pierro, Patrick Magee, Gérard Zalcberg, Howard Vernon, Clément Harari, Jean Mylonas, Eugene Braun Munk, Louis Colla, Catherine Coste, Rita Maiden, Michèle Maze, Agnès Daems, Magali Noaro, Dominique Andersen, Isabelle Cagnat, Gisèle Préville
screenplay by Walerian Borowczyk, based on the novel The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson, music by Bernard Parmegiani

Jekyll and Hyde

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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It should be the happiest of days in Dr Jekyll's (Udo Kier) life, as this day, at dinner, he's to announce his engagement to Fanny Osbourne (Marina Pierro), and their families and quite a few of their upperclass friends are already present - including Dr Lanyon (Howard Vernon), who Jekyll has had endless debates with over the years regarding Jekyll's experiments in transcendental medicine. The dinner is of course overshadowed from square one, when the police general present (Patrick Magee) can't stop talking about a brutal murder that has happened in the vicinity. But the occasion really loses all of its glory when one of Jekyll's guests who had to retreat early is found brutally raped and murdered (just like in the case the General has alluded to time and again) in Jekyll's guest room. Chaos ensues pretty much immediately, not at all helped when the General shoots one of Jekyll's employees dead in a case of sheer nervousness. Jekyll in the meantime slips away ... to turn into the ruthless Mr Hyde (Gérard Zalcberg), as who he commits some murders, ties up the General and has (consensuous) sex with the General daughter's before his very eyes - but once he's chased off and cornered, he turns into Jekyll once again and is free of all suspicion. Thing is, the next time he turns into Hyde, Fanny spies on him - which of course puts her in immediate danger ... but then again, she might not be quite the innocent girl everyone has taken her for ...

 

Much more than other versions of the story, Waleriyn Borowczyk puts the emphasis of his movie firmly on both the sensual and the socio-political aspects of the source material, and even if he strays quite a bit from Stevenson's well-known novella, Borowczyk's approach works quite well taken on its own terms, as does the satirical spin and the director's elegant and self-consciously voyeuristic mise-en-scène. And add to this a top-notch cast of cult actors, and you've got pretty much a must-see movie!

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
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shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD