Rent The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Miss Osbourne (1981)

3.1 of 5 from 57 ratings
1h 31min
Rent The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Miss Osbourne (aka Docteur Jekyll et les femmes) Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
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Synopsis:
It's the engagement party for brilliant young Dr Henry Jekyll (Udo Kier) and his fiancee, the beautiful Fanny Osbourne (Marina Pierro), attended by various pillars of Victorian society, including the astonishing Patrick Magee in one of his final roles.
But when people are found raped and murdered outside and ultimately inside the house, it becomes clear that a madman has broken in to disrupt the festivities - but who is he? And why does Dr Jekyll keep sneaking off to his laboratory? We know the answer, of course, but Walerian Borowczyk's visually stunning adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson's much-filmed tale is crammed with wildly imaginative and outrageously perverse touches characteristic of the man who scandalised audiences with Immoral Tales and The Beast, not least the explicitly sexualised nature of Mr Hyde's primal urges.
Actors:
, , , , , , Jean Mylonas, Eugene Braun Munk, Louis Colla, Catherine Coste, , Michèle Maze, Agnès Daems, Magali Noaro, Dominique Andersen
Directors:
Producers:
Ralph Baum, Robert Kuperberg, Jean-Pierre Labrande
Writers:
Walerian Borowczyk
Aka:
Docteur Jekyll et les femmes
Studio:
Arrow Films
Genres:
Horror
Countries:
France, Horror
BBFC:
Release Date:
11/05/2015
Run Time:
91 minutes
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 1.66:1
Colour:
Colour
Languages:
English, French
Subtitles:
English, English Hard of Hearing
Bonus:
  • Appreciation by critic and long-term Borowczyk fan Michael Brooke
  • Audio commentary featuring an archival interview with Walerian Borowczyk and new interviews with cinematographer Noel Very, editor Khadicha Bariha, assistant Michael Levy and filmmaker Noel Simsolo, moderated by Daniel Bird
  • Brand new interviews with Udo Kier and Marina Pierro
  • Himorogi (2012), a short film by Marina and Alessio Pierro, made in homage to Borowczyk Interview with artist and filmmaker Alessio Pierro
  • Phantasmagoria of the Interior, a video essay on Borowczyk's Dr Jekyll by Adrian Martin and Cristina Alvarez Lopez
  • Eyes That Listen, a featurette on Borowczyk's collaborations with electro-acoustic composer Bernard Parmegiani
  • Happy 70/(1979), a short film by Borowczyk inspired by Charles-Emile Reynaud's praxinoscope • Interview with Sarah Mallinson, former assistant to Borowczyk and fellow animator Peter Foldes Return to Melies: Borowczyk and Early Cinema, afeaturette by Daniel Bird
  • Theatrical trailer with optional commentary by editor Khadicha Bariha
BBFC:
Release Date:
11/05/2015
Run Time:
91 minutes
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 1.66:1
Colour:
Colour
Languages:
English, French
Subtitles:
English, English Hard of Hearing
Bonus:
  • Appreciation by critic and long-term Borowczyk fan Michael Brooke
  • Audio commentary featuring an archival interview with Walerian Borowczyk and new interviews with cinematographer Noel Very, editor Khadicha Bariha, assistant Michael Levy and filmmaker Noel Simsolo, moderated by Daniel Bird
  • Brand new interviews with Udo Kier and Marina Pierro
  • Himorogi (2012), a short film by Marina and Alessio Pierro, made in homage to Borowczyk Interview with artist and filmmaker Alessio Pierro
  • Phantasmagoria of the Interior, a video essay on Borowczyk's Dr Jekyll by Adrian Martin and Cristina Alvarez Lopez
  • Eyes That Listen, a featurette on Borowczyk's collaborations with electro-acoustic composer Bernard Parmegiani
  • Happy 70/(1979), a short film by Borowczyk inspired by Charles-Emile Reynaud's praxinoscope • Interview with Sarah Mallinson, former assistant to Borowczyk and fellow animator Peter Foldes Return to Melies: Borowczyk and Early Cinema, afeaturette by Daniel Bird
  • Theatrical trailer with optional commentary by editor Khadicha Bariha

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Reviews (1) of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Miss Osbourne

Intoxicatingly weird ... mild spoilers ... - The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Miss Osbourne review by NP

Spoiler Alert

This is an elegant and ‘Grand Guignol’ reimagining of Robert Louis Stevenson’s 1886 novella. It is gruesome, graphic, stylish, perverse and disturbing, painstakingly directed by Walerian Borowczyk to make the most of its richly gothic atmosphere.

The cast is excellent. Cult figure Udo Kier plays an unrepentant Jekyll, Jess Franco stalwart Howard Vernon is Dr. Lanyon, Patrick Magee is General Danvers Carew, Gérard Zalcberg is Hyde and Marino Pierro (who played Hélène in Jean Rollin’s ‘Living Dead Girl’) is Ms. Fanny Osbourne. Another star turn comes from Bernard Parmegiani with his raw and sinister electronic drone-like incidental score. All this and Noël Véry’s arthouse cinematography are intoxicatingly wonderful and work well together to create the unsettling ambience that saturates this production and maintains the viewer is on edge, even during the scenes in between Hyde’s sex-charged attacks.

There is, nor is there meant to be, any great sense of pace or linear storytelling. All we need to know is Hyde sweeps through a mansion full of bourgeoisie party-goers, slaying all. There’s nudity and sex and a limited amount of gore. Also there is a sense of kinky playfulness, the excesses of which I feel I might have been spared, sadly: at 90 minutes, the version I viewed is possibly ‘the cut version’ as the alternative is very hard to come by. I am not sure of this, however, as the version I watched isn’t tame in any significant way – and after all, the nightmare quality of this project is not limited to any single act, rather the overall, overwhelming sense of weirdness that falls across the entirety of ‘Dr Jekyll and Ms Osbourne’ like a shadow.

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