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"From Hell" The True Story Behind The Movie

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Chu Ju Lin Eng 205 26/OCT/2004 Research Paper #2 "From Hell" The True Story Behind The Movie " From Hell" is anther movie based on the case of Jack The Ripper, by the New 20th Century Fox Production. The Ripper haunted Whitechapel, a district of East London, during the late 1880s. He was said to be the first documented and investigated serial killer at the time. One thing we should ask ourselves when we are watching this two hour masterpiece: was the movie historically accurate? I believe the answer is far more complicated than a sheer yes or not. The deliver of the Whitechapel in 1880s and the illustration of the everyday lives of its resident were very accurate. On the other hand, the plot of the movie had deviated theatrically from the historical fact. But the combination of historical facts and fiction, gives us the movie " From Hell". And we shall ask why the movie is filled with make-up stories? These inaccuracies in the film would mislead those who have no previous knowledge of the ripper case false. ...read more.


B. The victims (prostitutes) of the ripper was quite accurate. They were middle aged women. C. The detail of the lodging house. Lodging house in Whitechapel were often over crowded- the poor could not afford the price of the bed, so they would pay a less amount of money for the privilege of sleeping over a rope. At the end of the 19th century, many poor people rented beds for the night at communal lodging establishments called "doss houses." Rent payments for the bed (the "doss") were usually owed in advance. Whitechapel had more than its share of such places. The fiction part of the movie: A: Inspector Abberline was an Opium addict and a psychic!? There is no evidence showing Abberline was an Opium addict. The film make use the Opium addiction to explain his psychic power. B: The victims were friends and were targeted by The Ripper. There is no any evidence showing that the victims were friends and were targeted by the Ripper. C: The method of killing in "From Hell" was very different from the known facts of the case. ...read more.


In most cases there was no scream heard on the part of the victim (as opposed to how it was portrayed in the movie). Why the movie is made from historical facts and made-up stories? A. Movies demand straightforward thrills romances. The center of the story is a fictional romance between Mary Kelly (Heather Graham) and Inspector Abberline (a spaced-out Johnny Depp), the lead investigator assigned to the case of murdered prostitutes in London's East End in the fall of 1888. The Ripper, the center character in the novel, does not have as large a role in this treatment; the story is mostly told from Abberline's point of view. B. Hollywood's tradition to have a happy ending story. Conclusion: In the end, From Hell straddles that fine line between fact and fiction so often found in Hollywood's "historical epics." While the Hughes brothers are to be commended in capturing much of the authenticity of the times, location and the case, the film should certainly not be viewed as an authentic representation of the Ripper crimes as a whole. Those interested in the real facts of the case are urged to pick up Sugden's Complete History of Jack the Ripper or Rumbelow's The Complete Jack the Ripper. Either book serves as a good introduction to the case. ...read more.

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