The Elephant man is a black and white movie by David Lynch, released in 1980. This touching movie was inspired by a real story. It deals with a man named John Merrick who lived during the Victorian era.
This man was also named “The Elephant man” due to a disease which caused a disfigurement.
In this movie we follow the life of John Merrick who was working in a freak-show and discover how he became appreciated after being abused his whole life. The realism of this movie is emphasized by the personalities of each character. Indeed, they are good and bad at the same time.
For example, John played by John Hurt is brave, kind and sensible for sure, but he can’t make his own decisions and he isn’t independent. He is like a child.
Dr Treves played by Anthony Hopkins is helpful but at the beginning, he uses John to display him as a simple scientific discovery to the other scientists.
Finally, Mrs Kendall, played by Anne Bancroft, a stage star, is very kind with Merrick but she is also narcissistic.
Moreover, with this movie, David Lynch wanted to show how society can treat people who are different, how we can lack humanity towards the ones who don’t look like everyone else, like John Merrick. And we can clearly see this point all along the movie.
Plus, it deals with the capacity to overcome differences. Indeed, John Merrick tries to live with the terrorized gazes cast at him. David Lynch shows that if we have more respect for others, we can change their lives.
To conclude, our impressions on the movie are positive. This movie is heart-breaking, with a strong message of respect and sympathy towards others.
Firstly, one of us almost cried when John Merrick thanks Mrs Treves for looking at him. It is a very moving scene.
And secondly, this movie is timeless because even if this movie is old, it is still a really big issue in our society.