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All films are manipulative to some degree, but it is a manipulation in which we as an audience engage by consent.
The Elephant Man will stand the final test and it will be appreciated fully by future audiences, in much the same way as Citizen Kane had to wait for some decades until audiences were able to fully comprehend its greatness.
Of the film itself I would only add that it is without doubt the most mature and satisfying of David Lynch's works - in many ways it is the final, polished jewel carved from the rough and ugly (but fascinating) diamond of Eraserhead, with the self-conscious artiness and juvenile qualities of the earlier film distilled into a potent and poignant statement on the human condition.
Some critics have dismissed The Elephant Man as an exercise in emotional manipulation, however I believe this completely misses the point.
In Belgium, Merrick was robbed by his road manager and abandoned in Brussels.
He eventually made his way back to London; unable to communicate, he was found by the police to have Dr. Treves came and took Merrick back to the London Hospital.
Closing disclaimer: This has been based upon the true life story of John Merrick, known as The Elephant Man, and not upon the Broadway play of the same title or any other fictional account.
See more » I first saw The Elephant Man at its pre-release showing in 1980, and it struck an immediate and resonant chord with me.
Soon after Merrick's visits to the hospital, Tom Norman's shop was closed by the police, and Merrick's managers sent him to tour in Europe.Torr agreed and arranged for a group of men to manage Merrick, whom they named the Elephant Man.After touring the East Midlands, Merrick travelled to London to be exhibited in a penny gaff shop on Whitechapel Road which was rented by showman Tom Norman.The discovery of a severed human ear found in a field leads a young man on an investigation related to a beautiful, mysterious nightclub singer and a group of psychopathic criminals who have kidnapped her child.
After a car wreck on the winding Mulholland Drive renders a woman amnesiac, she and a perky Hollywood-hopeful search for clues and answers across Los Angeles in a twisting venture beyond dreams and reality.
Starring Mark Leonard Winter director Matthew Lutton and playwright Tom Wright, reunite to create a poignant new work that uncovers empathy in a world that rejects difference.