bill bodkin and logan j. fowler sink their teeth into the new horror/comedy…
Theater, Rent, No Thanks, Undecided? Rent. Tim Burton was once a man at the top of the game. Dishing out bizarre classics like Beetlejuice, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Edward Scissorhands, and Big Fish, he’s become lackluster in recent years. However, Dark Shadows may be a subtle return to form for the director. Based on the gothic soap opera, the movie focuses on Barnabas Collins (Johnny Depp, ever Burton’s regular) who is cursed by a witch who he wronged. Barnabas becomes a vampire and entrapped in a coffin, and upon his release in the year 1972, he happens upon chance to meet his descendants, exactly around the same time the witch who cursed him returns into his life.
The trailer for the film had that quirky Burton touch to it, which necessarily isn’t a bad thing. I chuckled a few times as well, which is a positive. However, Burton’s track record lately doesn’t demonstrate a full on theater viewing for this on. I’d rather catch it in the comfort of my own home, as I am curious to see if the director has regained some of his old flair. Fingers crossed. –LJF
Theater, Rent, No Thanks, Undecided? Undecided. I, like my Trailer Tuesday colleague, have loved Tim Burton’s work for as long as I can remember. However, I will go so far as saying he’s lackluster. He’s still bold in vision and creative spirit, he has a brilliant movie mind and while some of his more recent films may not measure up with his classics, you still have to admire the cinematic risks he takes.
Now, with Dark Shadows, I’m on the fence. I love Burton, I love his macabre sense of humor and Johnny Depp knows how to perfectly execute Burton’s vision. The cast is stupendous — I really think Michelle Pfeifer’s performance is going to be an under the radar scene-stealer and who doesn’t get a kick out of seeing Johnny Lee Miller in a movie. But the trailers just haven’t been doing it for me, it seems too…Hollywood. It seems glossy and shiny and the jokes we’re shown are very broad, very general, very meh. Maybe as a fan of Burton and Depp’s collaborations and the excitement that they’re remaking one of the biggest cult TV series ever into a film raised the bar too high for me. Maybe I was expecting a weird, Danny Elfman-scored trailer with a whole bunch of silly, random and nonsensical things going on. Maybe I am putting too much on these trailers.
So this is why I’m undecided — the potential upside of this movie could be another Burton classic, the potential downside is the stupid dance Johnny Depp did at the end of Alice in Wonderland. And that is not worth a movie ticket, but still worth a rental. –BB