The Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde Rock ‘N Roll Musical (2003)


Dr. Henry Jekyll/Edward Hyde: Alan Bernhoft
Anne: Lisa Peterson
Amanda Lennox: Susannah Devereux
Utterson: John David Heffron
Dr. Richard Lanyon: Terence Marinan
Poole: Robert Ricucci

Directed: Andre Champagne
Producer: Alan Bernhoft
Written: Alan Bernhoft & Robert Ricucci

Summary: At the 1885 residence of Robert Louis Stevenson, a man is tossing. He gets up and sees phantoms of Hyde and a woman. He sits down and dips a pen in ink. Credits.

At the obligatory dry-ice lab with beakers of gorgeous colored chemicals, “My name is Henry Jekyll….” He injects. “I’m Hyde, Edward Hyde, and I’m all the evil things you’ve got hidden inside.” He has greasy hair and grungy teeth. Sex shops are closed at night. Two weeks earlier, he had spoken with his friend Richard Lanyon, who called Jekyll’s a “godforsaken project” that kept him working all hours. Jekyll’s girlfriend Anne speaks briefly with Jekyll’s housemate Poole, but Jekyll and Anne visit their friend Michael Utterson who gives Jekyll a cane and also worries about his project, since Jekyll has been ignoring his work at the clinic. Later, Jekyll proposes to Anne, insisting she’s more important to him than his work. He speaks of people’s fears: “pain, life, death,” never learning the truth beyond good and evil.

As he works out, Poole sings of his suspicions and anger at Jekyll “playing God.” Jekyll sings a love song about “Anne, She Can.” At the St. Patrick’s clinic, Jekyll is preoccupied with his electrochemical synapse neurotransmitter project. The receptionist suggests he let go and relax. When prescribing drugs to a woman, Amanda Lennox, he realizes that he needs a catalyst. In exhaustion, he hallucinates and sings “London Fog.” Hyde shows up taunting a drunkard, eventually calling him a “pathetic human waste” and beating him to death with the cane. Jekyll awakens in his lab, bloody. Hyde appears to Amanda, trying to act charming. She invites him to tea. Anne sings a love song, and dreams of herself in his lab.

At the Baked Potato pub, Hyde sings “Little Girls” — “sweet, … like pieces of meat.” Prostitute Ellie likes to do smack. Hyde offers her $500 and ties her hands behind her back with her stocking. He gags her, and asks, “How do you like this smack?” He hits her and strangles her: “Welcome to forever.”

Jekyll wants Michael to change his will to make Hyde beneficiary if Jekyll disappears. Michael warns that Jekyll is “close to the edge.” An older inspector questions two young people about the murder of Ellie. Richard has taken over Jekyll’s clinic work. Michael says Hyde has “some strange hold,” but Anne serves as hope for Jekyll.

Henry walks and involuntarily transforms. Hyde tells Amanda to deliver a letter to Richard. When she gets back, he beats her. Richard is to fetch chemicals from the lab and meet Hyde. Since he holds a gun on Hyde, the transformation back takes place before his eyes, Jekyll paraphrasing Milton about “how man can make a hell of heaven and a heaven of hell.” The inspector enters but Richard covers for Jekyll. Amanda is terrorized and names Hyde. Richard shoots Hyde but is killed. Michael lies about the cane to the inspector and goes to Henry. “It all went too far.” But supposedly Hyde has left forever, though Poole says no letter was hand-delivered today. Jekyll dumps his chemicals; Poole help him to bed. Anne sings, “Where is my Henry?”

It’s a full moon. Henry is in torment. He transforms and it’s “Time for a Kill.” “Down the streets of L.A. … [he’s] ready for a kill.” He meets Utterson and says, “I am Jekyll, you fool.” He beats Michael to death with the cane. The “I’m Hyde” music recurs with a rapid flashback montage. “My name is Henry Jekyll.” He crawls to the edge of a cliff and lets himself fall off a bridge to his death.

Commentary: If Jekyll had already been brain-experimenting, then on what? I suppose this is a commendable effort, though with The Phantom of the Opera there’s an intrinsic reason for music. What’s the Jekyll and Hyde explanation for this phenomenon?

Jekyll and Hyde Films