We gave it an A
A sensational and accomplished Jack the Ripper thriller directed by Allen and Albert Hughes, who take us deep inside the gaslight-and-cobblestones world of London in 1888, a murky Victorian maze in which the forces of squalor and civility remain separate yet secretly conjoined. Johnny Depp, in a performance of canny quietude and woe, is Fred Abberline, a police inspector with a low-key Sherlockian bent who smokes opium to hallucinate visions of the murders. From Hell is an entrancingly old-fashioned whodunit, yet the Hughes brothers also give us flickering images of homicidal terror — grainy vérité flashes that seem to slice the 19th century apart. The movie sends you out haunted by the calculated extremes of malevolence that are the sinister shadow of the modern age.