I can’t remember the last really good Johnny Depp/Time Burton movie I saw, but it must have been Ed Wood. That was about twenty years ago. But Depp and Burton are still golden for some reason and will likely keep cranking out movies until one of them dies.
Dark Shadows is another one of those movies that looked great in the coming attractions trailer, but fell a little short in the actual film. The details were very good, the costumes, music, and sets were bang on.
Johnny Depp actually made a pretty good Barnabas Collins and the special effects, especially the ghost effects, were absolutely fantastic. Helena Bonham Carter looked so normal in her role as a freeloading shrink that I didn’t recognize her for a good half of the movie. The rest of the cast was very good as well.
So what was the problem? Same as always of late, the script was a total and complete mess that made no damned sense at all. I don’t care that the writer watched every Dark Shadows episode ever and tried to cram it all in. I just wanted this movie to make sense-not be a clip show for the original series.
Dark Shadows was a movie that didn’t know what it wanted to be. Parts of it were funny, parts of it were sad, and parts of it were blood soaked horror. It’s a rare film, like say, Shaun of The Dead, that can pull off having so many things going on at once. Dark Shadows was a tad too ambitious.
Sadly the best bits from the film where in the trailer, the one great line comes when Barnabas watches Alice Cooper preforming and mutters to himself-Ugliest woman I’ve ever seen.
If you liked Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, then the odds are good you’ll like Dark Shadows. I pretty much hated Charlie and The Chocolate Factory and found Dark Shadows to be at least a step above the Bizzaro world version of Willy Wonka.