The Doors

1991

The Doors

Critics Consensus

Val Kilmer delivers a powerhouse performance as one of rock's most incendiary figures, but unfortunately, Oliver Stone is unable to shed much light on the circus surrounding the star.

57%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 60

79%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 60,574
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The Doors Photos

Movie Info

This Oliver Stone film chronicles the career of the famous '60s rock group, the Doors. Headed by Jim Morrison (Val Kilmer), this film follows the group from their humble beginnings in Los Angeles to the height of their popularity, and through the drug experimentation and abuse that lead to Morrison's death.

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Cast

Val Kilmer
as Jim Morrison
Meg Ryan
as Pam Courson
Kevin Dillon
as John Densmore
Kyle MacLachlan
as Ray Manzarek
Frank Whaley
as Robby Krieger
Kathleen Quinlan
as Patricia Kennealy
Michael Wincott
as Paul Rothchild
Michael Madsen
as Tom Baker
Josh Evans
as Bill Siddons
Crispin Glover
as Andy Warhol
Sean Stone
as Young Jim Morrison
Debi Mazar
as Whiskey Girl
Oliver Stone
as Film Professor
John Densmore
as Engineer--Last Session
Kendall Deichen
as Little Sister
Rion Hunter
as Indian in Desert
Wes Studi
as Indian in Desert
Steve Reevis
as Indian in Desert
Bernard Telsey Casting
as Young Man with Pam
Bruce MacVittie
as UCLA Student
Andrew Lauer
as UCLA Student
Harmonica Fats
as Blues Singer on Venice Boardwalk
Kelly Hu
as Dorothy
Josie Bissett
as Robby Krieger's Girlfriend
Fiona
as Fog Groupie
Bob Lupone
as Music Manager
Paul A. Rothchild
as Music Manager's Sidekick
Eric Burdon
as Backstage Manager
Nellie Red Owl
as Old Crone
Victoria Seeger
as Whiskey Girl
Jacqui Bell
as Whiskey Girl
Sergio Premoli
as Patron at The Whiskey
Mark Moses
as Jac Holzman
Frank Military
as Bruce Botnick
Deborah Falconer
as John Densmore's Girlfriend
Michele Bronson
as New York Groupie
Will Jordan
as Ed Sullivan
Sam Whipple
as Sullivan's Producer
Charlie Spradling
as CBS Girl Backstage
Lisa Edelstein
as Makeup Artist
Erik Dellems
as Hairdresser at the Sullivan Show
Mimi Rogers
as Magazine Photographer
Jennifer Rubin
as Edie Sedgwick
Paul Williams
as Warhol PR
Kristina Hare
as Partygoer
Costas Mandylor
as Italian Count
Bernt Kuhlman
as Warhol Eurosnob
Claire Stansfield
as Warhol Eurosnob
Karina Lombard
as Warhol Actress
Christopher Lawford
as New York Journalist
Dani Klein
as New York Journalist
Laura Esterman
as New York Journalist
Deborah Lupard
as New York Journalist
Ashley Stone
as New York Journalist
Richard B. Rifkin
as New York Journalist
Chris Boyle
as New York Journalist
Adrian Scott
as New York Journalist
Bill Graham
as New Haven Concert Promoter
Titus Welliver
as Macing Cop
Danny Sullivan
as New Haven Cop
Stanley White
as New Haven Cop
Frank Girardeau
as Police Lieutenant
Bonnie Bramlett
as Bartender
Rodney A. Grant
as Patron at Barney's
Brad von Beltz
as Hippie at Party
Csynbidium
as Girl in Car
Cristen Weldon
as Girl in Car
Patricia Kennealy
as Wicca Priestess
Davidson Thomson
as High Priest
Hawthorne James
as Chuck Vincent
Leonard Crow Dog
as Indian at the Outdoor Concert
Carmella Runnels
as Indian at the Outdoor Concert
Pride in Peril
as Miami Warm-Up Band
Kelly Leach
as Birthday Girl
William Kunstler
as Miami Attorney
Billy Vera
as Miami Promoter
Jack McGee
as Miami Cop
Peter Crombie
as Associate Lawyer
Annie McEnroe
as Secretary
Tudor Sherrard
as Office Publicist
Jad Mager
as Office P.A
Debbie Falconer
as John Densmore's Girlfriend
Keith Reddin
as Miami Journalist
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News & Interviews for The Doors

Critic Reviews for The Doors

All Critics (60) | Top Critics (17)

  • For a while, the obviousness and flat-out vulgarity are sort of entertaining, and it might be possible to enjoy the movie as a camp classic if you could ignore the mean-spiritedness that keeps breaking through.

    Jun 17, 2014 | Full Review…
  • Hysteria, however skillfully maintained, should never be mistaken for art -- a caution that applies equally to Stone and his subject.

    Jun 17, 2014 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • While it has its moments, taken by itself, The Doors amounts to little more than an impressionistic look at a boy and his death wish.

    Jun 17, 2014 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Insidiously funny and remarkably truthful about the psychedelic rock scene in the late 1960.

    Jun 17, 2014 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • The whole movie is white hot, lapped in honeyed golds, evilly blue and black or drenched in those swoony, fiery reds. The Doors blasts your ears and scorches your eyes.

    Jun 17, 2014 | Full Review…
  • Both a vibrant tribute to rock cult figure Jim Morrison and to the decade in which he flourished.

    Jun 17, 2014 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Doors

  • Feb 21, 2013
    Jim Morrison: This is the strangest life I've ever known. "The Ultimate Story of Sex, Drugs & Rock 'N' Roll" The Doors is about the best movie I could imagine being made about Jim Morrison and The Doors. Although the film may be named The Doors; it would probably make more sense if it were titled Jim Morrison, because that's really what this film is about. The sad fact is that Jim Morrison was The Doors and although the other three had amazing talent, they always seemed to be left in the shadow of Morrison. This film captures that aspect of the band extremely well.  Oliver Stone attacks the story of Jim Morrison as he would any other story, with the most controversial topics that came up in Morrison's life. Although with Morrison as his subject, it really wasn't too hard to find controversy. Whether it be Morrison experimenting with acid and peyote, getting black out drunk, screwing every girl that came to his concerts, rebelling against authority, or possibly showing his privates at a concert; Jim Morrison is controversy. Val Kilmer as Jim Morrison makes complete sense. Kilmer looks the part and when I say that, I mean it. He looks like Jim Morrison in a way I've only seen from one other biopic and that was Joaquin Phoenix as Johnny Cash in Walk the Line. Kilmer does do a good job in a very complicated and difficult role. The supporting cast fills in around him nicely as well. The Doors is a movie I really enjoyed as a Doors fan. I also love how Oliver Stone created the perfect drug infused, alcoholic, opinionated atmosphere that I would have to believe surrounded Morrison his whole life. If you're a fan of The Doors, this is an absolute must watch. For everyone else, it may still be worth a look, as it is a great music biopic. 
    Melvin W Super Reviewer
  • Apr 19, 2012
    It's an Oliver Stone-directed, Robert Richardson-filmed biopic about "The Doors". ...Wow, just hearing that description is making me get a little bit high, so one can only imagine what the actual film is like. Well, actually, it's surprisingly not that ridiculously intense, which is surprising, because even before "Natural Born Killers", one of history's most effective drug trip films that had nothing to do with drug trips, Oliver Stone couldn't even make a film about the conspiracies behind JFK's assassination without tripping you out a bit. Well, to be fair, as good and intriguing as that film is, after over three hours of just talking about John F. Kennedy getting shot, it doesn't even matter if the film is all that dull, you're still going to start hazing out a bit. Hey, say what you will about how trademark his style is, Stone is quite the versatile director, as far as, if nothing else, runtime is concerned, because he'll make a mammoth 3+ hour long epic about people just talking about someone getting shot, and then turn around to make a biopic on just about the entire career of a big time, controversial rock band, and yet it doesn't even make it past 140 minutes; in fact, the "special" edition - if you want to call it that - is shorter. Hey, I guess that's what you get "when you're strange" like Oliver Stone; and yes, all of that was only leading up to a forced reference to a song by The Doors, and people are likely to not even get it, which is a shame, because although I'm not off-the-walls fan of The Doors, every bit counts, in terms of getting people to listen to classic music. Of course, if you only know the song, just because you saw this film, then forget you, you dirty cheater, but still, good for you, because this film is still fairly good, yet kept from really hitting, thanks to a fair couple of bad trips (Acid reference definately intended) along the way. As I said, Oliver Stone's big trademark is his hyper-stylized and unconventional storytelling that throws you, sometimes a little too far, into the story, much like a meditative film does, but where those films were your just your run-of-the-mill movies, only with a good couple of new tricks, this is Stone's "actual" meditative film. It's not as hyper-stylized as some of his other work, though it is stylized art, and it's art that prevails as first priorty in Stone's direction, leaving storytelling to find itself crafted into some kind of meditation. That's cool and all, but, as I've said time and again, meditative storytelling is heavily flawed, drying up the story to the point of making it slow and rather pretentious, as it, seemingly in an unpreventable manner, wears its being unconvential on its sleeve by sacrificing some key notes in traditional storytelling, like development and some later exposition. Well, sure enough, this film, out of the gate, fails - nay - neglects to give us insight into the actual aura and purpose of our characters, and as things progress, exposition feels like an afterthought, leaving the film disjointed and also kind of confusing in a way. Still, while meditative storytelling is something that we see too often, no one really has that type of extremely distinct style that Oliver Stone has that fits this subject matter so startlingly perfectly, it's unreal, though still to a fault, because with all of this over-meditation over substance, after a while, you just have to wonder what in the world this film's point is. Of course, then you just realize that it doesn't really serve much more of a purpose outside of fulfilling Oliver Stone's destiny to make a film about The Doors, because although someone could definately do it better, virtually no one else could fit the bill more. However, while that only taints the film - seeing as the subject matter is so specifically designed for Oliver Stone to the point of only being tainted by his all-too fitting overstyle -, it is, at the same time, why the film is still rather rewarding, which isn't to say that it stood too major of a chance of descending to mediocrity or even lower, though it is to say that for everything that the film boasts what is wrong with Oliver Stone, it boasts volumes what is good about good ol' Stoned Stone. To be perfectly honest, The Doors was pretty blasted far from the greatest classic acid rock band, though it still put out some pretty good hits, and enough to make for a strong soundtrack that's both enjoyable to hear in this film and actually fits its tone, just as much as it fit the band's tone. Something just as fitting is, of course, Robert Richardson's cinematography, which is as stunning as it always is, especially in the Oliver Stone films, but also feels more fitting than ever, as its lush glow, bouncing color and sweeping, sometimes dizzying staging catches your eye and really brings the film's themes to life brilliantly, adding to its surrealism and emphasizing the tone of the film to a level that's relatable to the point of sucking you in and creating an immersive experience. Still, calm down kids, because watching this doesn't really get you high, but not for lack of trying, because although its meditative, surrealistic stylistic choices only hurt it as a film, being so fitting to the point of being overbearing, it still fits this subject matter like a glove while still really captivating you, leaving for you stick with the film, more often than not. Sure, Stone is a little bit too perfect to be making a film like this, and the film is left weaker than it should be because of it, but if someone had the guts to take on a biopic about The Doors and still make it this meditative, chances are, it would fall flat even harder, because, at the end of the day, Stone has such a deep understanding of this subject matter and how to execute it that the final product comes out as heavily flawed, but still enjoyable, because it's so very fitting, and with a fair deal of golden moments that grow more and more prominent as the film progresses. Sure, like just about every other Oliver Stone biopic, it's dubious as all get-out from a story point of view, yet as far as capturing the subject and its compenents in a highly believable fashion, whether it be during the moments of known fact or likely fiction, and his performers really help with that believability. Most of the performers don't just look their parts, but really know how to embody them, as well, with Val Kilmer, like the actual Jim Morrison, recieving almost all of the attention, and rightfully so. Kilmer nails Morrison's charismatic and very trippy presence as a visionary, a talent, a strange rebel and a human, flawed and strong, and does it all with a transformative presence that further sells you on Morrison's strengths and, especially, his flaws, making a compelling lead that neither earns too much of your affection, nor too much of your disdain, only investment in him as a human. At the end of the trip, Oliver Stone seems a little bit - nay - way too fitting for a film of this type, maybe not pumping it with superfluous ultra-style, but still too much style to the point of tainting development, exposition and general storytelling with an overly meditative and rather pretentious aura that holds back the final product; and yet, it's also that very style that helps make the film as good as it is, as it fills it with stunning, gripping imagery and tones that fit the themes of the film perfectly, uniquely and authentically, with across-the-board sharp, charismatic and transformative performances - particularly that of Val Kilmer - intensifying the gripping tone that ultimately leaves "The Doors" to stand as a generally fascinating, trippy and immersive meditative study on the rise and fall of the revolutionary classic band, as well as its notorious frontman. 3/5 - Good
    Cameron J Super Reviewer
  • Jul 13, 2011
    The key to the film is Val Kilmer, and he succeeds at delivering one of the best lead performances. Oliver Stone takes a lot of liberties with the true story of Jim Morrison so never take this film at face value. The visual style is what holds you from the very beginning, and it sadly lacked the popularity of most of Stone's earlier films. Oliver Stone delivered this and JFK in 1991, and while this went largely ignored, it holds up very well today. The biggest issue with the film is lack of true Morrison insight, but I think Stone wanted to portray him more as a mystic and an unknown. The rock n roll lifestyle was a curse for Morrison, and the hard life finally caught up to him at a very young age. Musically he was beginning to fade, due to the hard life of substance abuse, but he was taken at a very young age. The film captures the era and the style with incredible accuracy, and the ensemble cast work well together. An underrated film, and one that is primed to be rediscovered in the current music genre resurgence at the moment. 02/02/2019
    Brendan N Super Reviewer
  • Mar 06, 2011
    Oliver Stone is always prone to excess, and he indulges himself to the fullest with <i>The Doors</i> taking full advantage of a band's drug-fueled rock-and-roll hippie lifestyle. I gave it 4 stars when I saw it in a theater 20 years ago, the concerts and hallucinations were all so viscerally exciting and dangerous, but I can't say whether I'd react the same way today. Better I leave this one as a trippy memory.
    Doctor S Super Reviewer

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