The Elephant Man

This week’s film is more appropriate for older viewers.

In 19th century London, a doctor (Anthony Hopkins) comes across Joseph Merrick, a young man with severe facial deformities, being exhibited at a freak show. Intrigued by Merrick’s unique medical condition and concerned for his health and welfare, the doctor persuades the show’s greedy owner to let him examine Merrick at the hospital. 

With the hospital offering him the opportunity for a new sort of life, Merrick begins learning how to speak and converse more effectively, hoping that he can help others to look past his severe condition and see him for the man he is inside. Of course, this remains difficult for some, not least of all his old boss, who wants his money-making exhibit back.

Loosely based on the real life of Joseph Merrick, The Elephant Man reminds us to always recognize the inherent worth and dignity of every human. The film is rated PG, but some scenes of intense drama and distressing material make it more appropriate for older audiences. (See the parents’ guide for more information.)

Runtime: 2 hours, 4 minutes
Rated PG
USCCB rating: A-III
91% on Rotten Tomatoes
IMDb Parents Guide