«Yes, there are cigarettes!»

"Yes, there are cigarettes!"

 

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An article about The Ninth Gate and cigarettes, written by Okagesan

Yes, Johnny Depp is known to smoke in real life, but in this movie, we have atleast a pair of brand cigarettes to analyze. I will compare them to the signs of evil and death, and also the sexuality of the entire movie. Not to mention, Depp looks good with a cigarette in his hand, right ladies?

Here, we have Dean Corso (Johnny Depp), as a rare book investigator, working for the big book publisher, Boris Balkan (Frank Langella). Corso is sent on a mission to seek out the other two copies of a book that Balkan just received, The Nine Gates of the Kingdom of Shadows. Along the, in this thriller Corso has a number of cigarettes.

Dean Corso’s signature cigarette is the Lucky Strike. The product originated as a "cut-plug chewing tobacco" but eventually evolved into cigarette before the acquirement of it by the American Tobacco League (ATC). This allowed the ATC to have a rival product against R.J. Reynold’s Camel. "Lucky Strike separates the men from the boys….but not from the girls" was their tag line in the early ’60s.

Aside from being considered "the absolutely best cigarette in the world.," it is considered high class and gourmet, much like the alternative cigarette-type, the kretek (see Djarum Blacks), notably for its lack of filter, which was the acclaimed reason for the strong and scrumptious taste. The current distributor, Brown & Williamson, introduced filtered styles in 1996, in San Francisco. This made the cigarette once more popular among the primary cigarette demographic (which is disputably all 14 to 24 year old males).

The next cigarette in this show case is the ever-so-famous kretek (and my personal favorite), the Djarum Black. Kretek’s are made of a clove and tobacco blend. The "Black" is 40% clove and 60% tobacco. This makes the "Black" considered roughly the same strength as "Medium 100", the primary medium-strength Marlboro. The resulys of a loose survey say that the "Black" is much more potent than the "Medium 100", perhaps due to the clove smell. Aside from the herb in the cigarette, there is more to the "Black"; it has a "sauce" composed of cinammon, clove and cardomom. This flavoring is absolutely apparent once you take a drag and then lick your lips. One description of the taste is "like a gingerbread cookie".

The appearance of the single most popular kretek is during the seduction scene in Corso’s apartment. The widow, Liana Telfer (Lena Olin) attempts to recover the book from Corso, through sex. Before committing the deed, she opens up a small cigarette case (a tin big enough for 6-10 cigarettes of varying sizes) and retrieves a "Black". One infuriating detail about this scene is that Telfer only has 2-3 drags from the expensive cigarette before putting it out. Many smokers would refuse to put out that cigarette so soon, even for sex (which was the case, in this instance).

Symbolically, the "clove", because of its tasty reputation, is a female cigarette, particularly in the United States. Much like how tasty alcoholic beverages (Smirnoff, Bacardi, Pina Colada, and so on) are called "bitch-drinks", clove is looked at as a "bitch-smoke". Female characters in movies often smoke a clove cigarette, especially "Blacks", Djarum Specials, or any sub-brand that has an off-colored rolling paper. These darker rolls convey a sense of seduction, match the traditional "little black dress" and obviously look richer than the average Marlboro Ultralight.

Cigarettes, such as the olde-tyme favorite, Lucky Strikes, ring out nostalgia. A book collector like Corso is very much involved with older cultures, and all about the time periods that produced the classic literature he trades. He seems to be a bachelor that is very much in touch with his roots, although he may not announce such a thing. Even though Corso is a bastard of a mercenary, his choice of cigarette easily heightens his attractiveness (which may actually have more to do with his character being played by Depp).

Any smoke, including cigars and marijuana, has a very powerful theme involved. Death is very much an undertone in a movie such as Polanski’s latest. Smoking causes harm to the body, with tar, nicotine, fumes, tobacco, and ashes. It is a very simple way to cause premature death. One who smokes will always be attached to the stigma of a "dead person walking". Amongst cancer, emphesema, and heart trouble, the smell of a cigarette can be related to a corpse burning, perhaps from the inside out. It is common knowledge that burning flesh is not a pleasant smell.

Cigarettes are very much the most general thing about our world, these days. You could argue that more people smoke than are able to eat. But even when cigarettes are this popular, very rarely do they play in a movie as a silent character. When watching The Ninth Gate or any other movie featuring a cigarette, don’t just rub it off as a logo-placement. Think of the implications these cigarettes make—what type of cigarette it is will help determine what type of taste the character smoking them prefers. It adds to the environment and develops the habits of a character.

July 3, 2006, Okagesan, Indeppth.com

 

Summary

 

21 Jump Street (TV Series)

21 Jump Street (TV Series)

 

Johnny Depp played the part of Officer Tom Hanson from 1987 to 1989.

As he first appeared in the show’s pilot, Tom Hanson was an eager but inept young police officer, incapable of getting the respect required to subdue criminals due to the fact that he looked even younger than he was. After bumbling the apprehension of some criminals and getting his partner’s nose broken, Tom was moved to the Jump Street division, where his high schooler looks would be an asset rather than a hindrance. Tom was a real square at that point in the show. His sport of choice was bowling, he broke cover at the drop of a hat, and was quite put out when he was required to have an ear pierced and dress in grubby clothes. As the show went on, however, audience reactions to Tom caused the writers to take a different look at his character. With Johnny Depp fast becoming a teen hearthrob, it seemed appropriate to the makers of the that he should be playing the sort of "bad boy" that teen hearthorbs are supposed to play. Tom remained a bowler, but he stopped being a square. He became a bad boy with a heart of gold—one that stoop to anything in order to "do the right thing." He broke the law, got a tattoo, crashed parties, and angsted. While he may not have been a very deep character, Tom was at least a stepping stone in Depp’s career.

Thanks to TheCollector for the character information.

 

Summary

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A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

 

Directed by Wes Craven

Starring:
John Saxon …. Lt. Thompson
Ronee Blakley …. Marge Thompson
Heather Langenkamp …. Nancy Thompson
Amanda Wyss …. Tina Gray
Jsu Garcia …. Rod Lane (as Nick Corri)
Johnny Depp …. Glen Lantz
Charles Fleischer …. Dr. King
Joseph Whipp …. Sgt. Parker
Robert Englund …. Freddy Krueger

This classic of the modern horror movie was directed by Wes Craven in 1984. It injected life to the teen-slasher genre that had been vibrant for the first years of the 80’s, but which was already growing tired. Nightmare on Elm Street captivated audiences with its thrillingly directed action sequences, surreal, supernatural dream sequences and especially with the introduction of the character of Freddy Krueger. Mean, nasty, but always so devilishly enjoyable and funny, Freddy Krueger gave nightmares to children and teenagers all over the world.

A Nightmare on Elm Street was, and still is a complete horror movie; Good production values, memorable characters, well directed death scenes and an intriguing storyline. Robert Englund completely dominates this movie (and especially all the sequels) with his performance as the deranged child killer Freddy. This was surely the role of a lifetime for him; at the time this is being written (April 2006) he is filming a new TV-Series where he again plays Freddy Krueger. In total he has appeared in 8 movies and 2 TV-Series’ as Freddy.

The original Nightmare on Elm Street also features John Saxon in the role of Lieutenant Thompson (Nancy’s father). Prolific genre regular Saxon is familiar from movies such as Enter the Dragon, Tenebrae and From Dusk Till Dawn. What some people may forget (except Depptologists that is) is that the movie also features the first ever feature film performance by the young Johnny Depp. Depp plays a teenager named Glen Lantz whose exit from the movie is one of the most memorable scenes of the whole Elm Street series.

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Years later, Depp also had a small cameo in the sixth Krueger movie; Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare.

If you are interested in A Nightmare on Elm Street and its sequels, we recommend you to get the The Nightmare on Elm Street Collections , which includes the first 7 movies in the same box.

 

 

Summary

 

Private Resort (1985)

Private Resort (1985)

 

Directed by George Bowers

Starring:
Rob Morrow …. Ben
Johnny Depp …. Jack
Emily Longstreth …. Patti
Karyn O’Bryan …. Dana
Hector Elizondo …. The Maestro
Dody Goodman …. Mrs. Rawlings
Tony Azito …. Reeves
Hilary Shepard …. Shirley (as Hilary Shapiro)
Leslie Easterbrook …. Bobbie Sue
Michael Bowen …. Scott
Lisa London …. Alice
Andrew Dice Clay …. Curt (as Andrew Clay)

To find out what Depptologist Redfox and other Depp-fans think about this movie, check out our Private Resort discussion topic.

 

 

 

Summary

Yes this is the movie where Johnny appears nude.

Slow Burn (1986)

Slow Burn (1986)

 

Directed by Matthew Chapman

Starring:
Eric Roberts …. Jacob Asch
Beverly D’Angelo …. Laine Fleischer
Dennis Lipscomb …. Ron McDonald
Raymond J. Barry …. Gerald McMurty
Anne Schedeen …. Mona
Emily Longstreth …. Pam Draper
Johnny Depp …. Donnie Fleischer
Henry Gibson …. Robert
Dan Hedaya …. Simon Fleischer

Plot:
Jacob Asch is hired by Gerald McMurty to find his ex-wife Laine and their son in Palm Springs. Jacob finds Laine and a teenager named Donnie who may or may not be Gerald’s son. He also finds an intricate web of deceit and betrayal that begin to lead to death. He takes it upon himself to unravel the mystery and find out who is killing people and why (IMDB).

Release info:
This little known Made for TV movie has never been released on Dvd, and we do not if there are any plans to release it. Best way to get is to purchase a secondhand copy of the old VHS from Amazon Marketplace. Currently copies are selling for less than 7 dollars.
You can click here to get the VHS from Amazon

 

 

Summary

Seen this movie? If so, please send us a review!

Platoon (1986)

Platoon (1986)

 

Directed by Oliver Stone

Starring:
Tom Berenger …. SSgt. Bob Barnes
Willem Dafoe …. Sgt. Elias Grodin
Charlie Sheen …. Pvt. Chris Taylor
Forest Whitaker …. Big Harold
Francesco Quinn …. Rhah
John C. McGinley …. Sgt. Red O’Neill
Richard Edson …. Sal
Kevin Dillon …. Bunny
Reggie Johnson …. Junior Martin
Keith David …. King
Johnny Depp …. Pvt. Gator Lerner
David Neidorf …. Tex
Mark Moses …. Lt. Wolfe
Chris Pedersen …. Crawford
Tony Todd …. Sgt. Warren

 

There is a brand new 20th anniversary Collector’s Edition dvd of Platoon. This set includes a commentary by Oliver Stone, deleted scenes , documentaries etc.

Platoon — 20th Anniversary Collector’s Edition (Widescreen) (1986)

 

 

Trivia

Sgt Warren in Platoon was one of the earliest movie roles for Tony Todd, who later became known as the villain Candyman in the horror movie series of the same name. In recent years Tony Todd has become a regular face in the horror genre.

Cry-Baby (1990)

Cry-Baby (1990)

 

Directed by John Waters

Starring:
Johnny Depp as Wade ‘Cry-Baby’ Walker
Amy Locane as Allison Vernon-Williams
Susan Tyrrell as Ramona Rickettes
Polly Bergen as Mrs. Vernon-Williams, Allison’s Grandmother
Iggy Pop as Uncle Belvedere Rickettes
Ricki Lake as Pepper Walker
Traci Lords as Wanda Woodward

 

Review written by Lydia Encyclopedia:

Cinephiles are all familiar with John Waters: He’s the basic king of all things filthy, disgusting, and gloriously dirty. And he’s not afraid to show it in his movies; like this Johnny Depp “musical”, Cry Baby.
In Cry Baby, Waters, with Depp in the lead acting role basically stomps, pisses, spits on, and really just makes fun of the old Elvis movies and Juvenile “warnings” movies of yesteryear, which were meant to scare youngsters away from their wholesome “square” lifestyles.

The basic plot of the movie circles around young lady Allison Vernon-Williams (Played sweetly by Amy Locane) who falls in love with Depp’s character, Wade “Cry Baby” Walker, a slick rockabilly “Greaser” with the power to get into any girl’s err… “heart” by showing off his ability to shed a single tear. (Maybe Anthony Hopkins could have taken the role too, only I doubt he makes any girls besides me swoon.)

Allison can’t resist Wade’s world, so much more wild, fun, and free (The music is better too, and the music in this film is great, I might add.) as opposed to the stuffy world she inhibits with her non-risk taking friends and Grandma.
Inevitably, it is Wade that falls in love with Miss Allison the “square”, and it all comes down to a “dancing contest”.(Here is where the obvious Grease references obviously come up, in case you were too dense to get them before.)

All in all, this is not one of Johnny’s greatest movies, but it is a fun little piece of candy, especially with all the supporting cast in their hilarious roles. (One of the best being Ricki Lake as Pepper Walker)

Character Synopsis: Johnny Depp’s character, Wade “Cry Baby” is played with a comically stone-face, the only indication of it being real that single infamous tear drop that spots the corner. He’s playing the “bad boy” Which is a favorite of Depp, and during this era of his career, he tried his best to shatter that image of the “teen heartthrob” by going for the wackiest roles he could salvage, and this is among them. Cry baby hasn’t got much substance, but his quirkiness compensates.

 

 

Trivia

Tom Cruise, Robert Downey Jr. and Jim Carrey were considered for teh lead role before Johnny Depp was cast.

Edward Scissorhands (1990)

Edward Scissorhands (1990)

 

Directed by Tim Burton

Starring:
Johnny Depp as Edward Scissorhands
Winona Ryder as Kim
Diannie Wiest as Peg
Alan Arkin as Bill

Anthony Michael Hall as Jim
Kathy Baker as Joyce
Robert Olivieri as Kevin

Vincent Price as The Inventor

This was the movie where it all begun; Edward Scissorhands was the first collaboration between Johnny Depp and director Tim Burton. Before the movie came out, Johnny Depp was considered to be just another TV teen-heartthrob. After the movie, Johnny Depp was a real movie star. As Johnny Depp wrote in his foreword to the book Burton on Burton, Tim Burton (largely through giving him the role as Edward Scissorhands) rescued Johnny from being “"a loser, an outcast, just another piece of expendable Hollywood meat.”

Plot synopsis (by Miss Skellington):

Edward Scissorhands is the charming story of a young man, a young man who was not conceived in natural circumstances, but was created by an elderly inventor (played by Vincent Price) who spent his years in his mansion filled with his creations over looking the ‘pastel paradise’ that is suburbia. He names his young creation Edward.

The inventor unexpectedly dies before completing Edward, leaving him with metal scissors for hands; Edward is incomplete and alone until he meets Peg (played by Dianne Wiest), a down on her luck, optimistic and kind hearted Avon Lady who senses the vulnerability and fear in Edward above her own fear and shock of his disfiguration and so invites him to live with her family in the suburbia that the inventors mansion over looked.

Edwards journey through this new world are both humorous and tragic, we sympathize and relate as he struggles to fit in and do what society says is the right thing, we sit in awe as we watch the shy and confused Edward release his passion and artistry on the suburbs hedges and the women’s hair and we cant help but smile at his innocence and charm, most of all, we can’t help but fall in love with this beautiful tragedy as he falls in love with Pegs daughter, Kim (played by Winona Ryder).
The ending is one that can stir up many emotions, none of them being disappointment, but rather, sadness and heart ache and yet there is still a sense of joy and content.

The movie is directed by Tim Burton who alongside Caroline Thompson wrote the story, Burton and Depp work amazingly together, and the music score by Danny Elfman is nothing short of brilliant. The all star cast and superb set and costume designers make this film something which can only be described as a masterpiece.

 

Also check out these Character Profiles written by Redfox:

Kim Boggs
Peg Boggs

To find more information about this movie, visit Tim Burton Collective’s Edward Scissorhands page.

 

Trivia

The daughter of Vincent Price, Victoria Price, has a cameo in the movie as a TV Newswoman.

Arizona Dream (1993)

Arizona Dream (1993)

 

Directed by Emir Kusturica

Starring:
Johnny Depp …. Axel Blackmar
Jerry Lewis …. Leo Sweetie
Faye Dunaway …. Elaine Stalker
Lili Taylor …. Grace Stalker
Vincent Gallo …. Paul Leger
Paulina Porizkova …. Millie
Michael J. Pollard …. Fabian

 

 

To read an article/review of the movie written by Polish film expert Marek Martowicz, click here.

 

 

 

 

 

Summary

 

Benny & Joon (1993)

Benny & Joon (1993)

 

Directed by Jeremiah S. Chechik

Starring: 
Johnny Depp …. Sam
Mary Stuart Masterson …. Juniper ‘Joon’ Pearl
Aidan Quinn …. Benjamin ‘Benny’ Pearl
Julianne Moore …. Ruthie
Oliver Platt …. Eric
CCH Pounder …. Dr. Garvey (as C.C.H. Pounder)
Dan Hedaya …. Thomas
Joe Grifasi …. Mike
William H. Macy …. Randy Burch

In a small town, an auto mechanic named Benny is devoted to taking care of his mentally ill sister, Joon, who can barely function alone in the real world despite being a talented artist. This relatively stable situation is shaken up when Benny is obliged in a poker game to welcome another player’s relative, Sam, to his home for a few days. When Sam arrives, he quickly makes an impression with his quietly eccentric ways which emulate the antics of the great silent movie comedian, Buster Keaton. Without Benny’s full knowledge, Sam and Joon finds themselves drawn to each other to the fullest degree. However when Benny finds out, it creates a rift in the siblings as they struggle to accept their relationship is profoundly changing with the presence of this odd newcomer.

 

 

Summary

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