Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Movie Review: Tim Burton's Dark Shadows

I normally don't like vampire movies. But since it's Johnny Depp playing the vampire in Tim Burton's Dark Shadows, I assumed it must be good. And it was!

Last night, some friends and I got to watch the movie's press screening and found ourselves laughing at the many punchlines Depp effortlessly dishes out through words and actions. He's a funny and weird vampire who, despite his penchant for human blood which leads him to kill people, believes in the importance of family.

Barnabas Collins (Depp), a playboy in the 1800's, had the misfortune to offend a witch who then killed his parents and the woman he loves, and cast a spell that turned him into a vampire. The vendetta ran so deep that even after two centuries, the same witch continues to wreak havoc on the Collins' family.

After being accidentally freed from his chained coffin, Barnabas returns home to Collinwood to be with his dysfunctional descendants. There, he finds Elizabeth Collins Stoddard (Michelle Pfeiffer) and her daughter Carolyn (Chloe Grace Moretz), Roger Collins (Jonny Lee Miller) and his son David (Gulliver McGrath), along with psychiatrist Dr. Julia Hoffman (Helena Bonham Carter) who was supposed to help David get over the trauma of the boy's mother's death, plus the helpers including David's nanny Victoria (Bella Heathcote), a dead-ringer for Barnabas' one true love Josette.

Barnabas then sets off to rebuild the family business and try to outwit Angelique Bouchard (Eva Green), the same witch, now a modern businesswoman, who caused him to be locked up for almost 200 years.

There are twists to the story that will perhaps scare you a little and gross you out a bit but you'll also end up laughing at the witty dialogues as well as Depp's facial expressions and body language. The make up and costumes are fantastic, more so the special effects towards the end of the story. Too, the Collinwood Manor, although very dark, has managed to look majestic even in disrepair.

Watch Dark Shadows and see how Barnabas' and his family's story will end. Would they defeat the evil witch and will Barnabas find true love again? You have to discover those for yourself :) 

Read an interview with Johnny Depp, Tim Burton, and other members of the production team here as they talked about the making of the movie.

Dark Shadows is very entertaining. Expect to be amazed by many of the scenes. It opens across the Philippines tomorrow, Thursday, May 10,  and is distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

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