26 November 2007

Thoughts on Tim Burton Becoming a Parody of Himself

I was never into your boy Tim Burton. I know some, if not most, swear by the dude and his films. Burton is a genre unto himself, but maybe lately too unto himself. His brand has lost some of its panache as he's delved into expensive remakes like "Planet of the Apes" and "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," neither of which was highly regarded.

I dunno about you folks but I can't tell one Tim Burton movie from the next; they're all basically the same. Like he made one mold, which was different and unique for the time, quirky and gothic sure, but he has been filling that same mold ever since; over and over again with gooey Johnny Depp.

And I've no real beef with Johnny Depp, but does Burton know there are other actors out there? Casting Depp in every goddamn movie makes all his movie looks even more alike!

I loved Pee-Wee's Big Adventure, Beetlejuice and later, Big Fish. But ever since Edward Scissorhands in 1990 Burton has basically been photocopying his own movies over and over again and adding a new title.

James and the Giant Peach (admittedly a bit more colourful), The Nightmare Before Christmas, Sleepy Hollow, Corpse Bride and now this Sweeney Todd... it's all the same goddamn movie!!

Sure, the designs are elegant; all curled and gothic; and you've got dead cartoon dogs, clowns, falling snow, black and white checkered floors, twisted trees, jack-o'-lanterns, scarecrows, striped snakes and butterflies. His main characters tend to be outsiders, and are usually shy, with a pale complexion and unruly black hair, not unlike Robert Smith. Many of his characters are given a back story regarding their relationships with their fathers, often as a means of explaining erratic behaviour.

It's just much too Hot Topic and stereotypical goth for me.

Burton repeatedly incarnates his ideas in Johnny Depp. The symbiosis continues in his new movie now, “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”.

But if I showed you a still from Sleepy Hollow and a still from Sweeney Todd you would never know the fucking difference. It's the same goddamn movie!

So now Burton signed a deal with Disney to direct two 3D films. The first will be an motion capture adaptation of Alice in Wonderland, then he will remake Frankenweenie as a stop-motion film.

Frankenweenie was a short film Burton made back in 1984. It is a parody of, and homage to, the 1931 film Frankenstein based on Mary Shelley's book of the same name. It got Burton fired by Disney; the studio claimed that he had wasted company resources. But after the mainstream success of Beetlejuice, Pee Wee's Big Adventure, and Batman, Frankenweenie was given a home video release as an extraon the Nightmare Before Christmas DVD.

He will also direct The Spook's Apprentice, which is about a teenage boy training to be an exorcist in the 1700's and must learn how to exorcise ghosts, contain witches, and bind boggarts. Gee, I wonder what that'll look like!


Anonymous said...

I like the movies from Tim Burton. And i think he does a great job with Johnny Depp. they are working so well together.

Anonymous said...

I, too like Burton's films. Have you seen any of his works? They are all so unique and stylish; just because Johnny Depp frequently collaborates with Burton, his films are all alike?

Gotham City Insider said...

He doesn't have "works". He makes "movies". And yes I have seen enough of them to know that they all seem the same to me and they all star Johnny Depp.