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File:Angel-heart 4055.jpg

Angel Heart is a 1987 horror movie directed by Alan Parker, starring Mickey Rourke, Robert De Niro and Lisa Bonet. Set in the late 1940's, a private detective (Rourke) is hired by a mysterious client (De Niro) who seeks to find a man named Johnny Favorite. This search leads him to New Orleans, deep in the heart of its voodoo district. What starts off as a simple missing person's case soon excalates into multiple murders and the supernatural.

Upon release, the movie was controversial due to a sex scene with Lisa Bonet, resulting in her being kicked off The Cosby Show.

Tropes used in Angel Heart (1987 film) include:

Epiphany: You know what they say. It's always the badass that make a girl's heart beat faster.

  • Beat Still My Heart / ...And Show It to You: Margaret, in a scene yjat is actually an in-universe Call Back to what happened to the real Harry Angel.
  • Best Known for the Fanservice: Most people remember this as "the movie where the Cosby kid gets naked". It's unfortunate since the film is an excellent horror/mystery with great performances by everyone involved, including Mickey Rourke and Robert DeNiro.
  • Bilingual Bonus: Johnny Favourite's real last name is "Liebling". It means "darling" or... "favorite". Some translations, it means "God's favorite."
  • Death by SexEpiphany is murdered by the possessed Angel, who is revealed to be Johhny Favorite, with a gun to her vagina.
  • Eye Scream: Dr. Fowler is shot directly through the eye.
  • Fan Disservice — One of the advertised draws of this movie was a naked Lisa Bonet. The actual scene had more to do with Squick than fantasy.
    • About half of the sequence is a pretty straightforward sex scene, it's the second half where things get really creepy. Thank goodness for rewinding!
    • Reminded this troper of The Wicker Man--the ORIGINAL!--of "Willow's song". Which is also made of equal parts hard-on and stark horror.
    • Not to mention that Lisa had a Wet Sari Scene earlier as well.
  • Fan Service: Connie. Yowza.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: Thankfully, we never see the Groin Attack on Toots. Or Epiphany.
  • Hellevator — Mickey Rourke takes a ride down to Hell in an elevator.
  • Hey, It's That Guy!: Captain Cragen or an ancestor as the lawyer representing Cyphre.
  • Hollywood Voodoo — However, has nothing to do with Satan or Satanism.
  • Humiliation Conga: Harry, the main character, gets the crap kicked out of him in basically every scene. And that's just the beginning of his torture.
    • Subverted in that Harry was killing all of the witnesses while in his Johnny persona.
  • I Am a Humanitarian: Johnny ate Harry's heart while it was still beating. Squick.
  • Identity Denial: "I know who I am!" No, you don't.
  • Incest Is Relative: Epiphany is Johnny's daughter. Turns out, Harry is Johnny.
  • It's Always Mardi Gras in New Orleans: Averted. The film takes place in New Orleans during a festival but it's a voodoo festival.
  • The Killer in Me: Harry Angel is Johnny Favorite and committed all the murders himself, albeit under Cyphre's influence.
  • Large Ham: DeNiro is obviously having a wonderful time with the role. At any moment you expect him to giggle.
  • Leitmotif: The tune to "I Cried For You" keeps haunting Harry. Even Epiphany sings it in the bathtub at one point. That's because it was Johnny Favorite's most popular song. It makes sense Epiphany's mother would sing it to her.
  • Louis CypherSatan's appearance is under the pseudonym Louis Cyphre The Trope Namer.
  • Male Gaze: Angel watches a nurse's derriere as she walks away.
  • Neo Noir — One of the few examples of noir crossing over with horror.
  • Noble Bigot with a Badge: Det. Sterne. While he initially comes off as a vile racist, he does care about Epiphany and her orphaned kid. He gives hints about being a Beleaguered Bureaucrat as well.
  • Obviously Evil / Card-Carrying Villain: Even when you can't tell who Louis is, the man is delighting in his own evilness.
  • Occult Law Firm — Winesap and MacIntosh.
  • Playing Against Type: Lisa Bonet was using this film as an opportunity to get away from her Contractual Purity.
  • Pretty Little Headshots: Averted with Dr. Fowler. Skull, blood and brain a-plenty on the pillow.
  • Satan — Makes an appearance.
  • Sexy Secretary: Connie again. Obviously, Harry notices.
  • The Stinger: "Harry?" "Johnny?"
  • Surreal Horror — Some places in the movie get rather like this, especially the infamous sex scene.
  • Suspiciously Apropos Music: During the sex scene with Epiphany, "Honeymoon Blues" is on the radio ("Tom, Dick and Harry...") Then La Vern Baker's "Soul on Fire" takes over.
  • The Big Easy — The movie ends up in a stereotypical New Orleans.
  • Tomato in the MirrorMickey Rourke Literally, since every time he looks in the mirror, he gets strange feelings.
    • Actually pointed about by Louis.

"That's it Johnny, take a good look! However cleverly you sneak up on the mirror, your reflection always looks you straight in the eye."


Harry Angel: "I know who I am!"

    • Every time Harry becomes the murderous Johnny, it's indicated by a fan stopping and rotating backwards.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes? — Harry's "thing" with chickens. After knowing the twist ending, it's possible that Harry is afraid of chickens because the blood of a dead chicken was used when Johnny Favorite traded places with him.