Thursday, May 10, 2012

Dark Shadows

I went to see Dark Shadows today and I can't stop thinking about it. There has been much controversy over this movie, partly because diehard fans of the original series are concerned about the way the material will be treated, and partly because Tim Burton is experiencing something of a backlash at this point in his career. Neither of these factors were relevant to me as I have never seen the sixties TV series, and I remain a fan of Tim Burton. I just went along hoping to see an entertaining movie.

This is not a review blog, so I'm not going to give an actual review of the film. I'm also not going to give away any of the plot. I just have a few thoughts. First of all, Dark Shadows is  visually stunning and some of the special effects are breathtaking. It's also darker than the trailers would lead you to believe, but still funny. Essentially, it's an utterly over-the-top Gothic melodrama. As I said, I've never seen the original soap opera, but I get the feeling there were a lot of references to it in the movie. It felt like a condensed Gothic soap. I also loved the seventies soundtrack, which included a couple of performances by Alice Cooper.

This movie is certainly not going to be everyone's cup of tea. In many ways, like a soap opera, it's quite surreal, but I think that's why I can't get it out of my mind, and I definitely want to see it again!


36 comments:

  1. Looks brilliant! Colleen Atwood's costumes are, as always, stunning, and I can't wait to see the film. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jamie,

      I hope you enjoy it! I really want to watch it again and just savour it without all the expectations. The costumes and sets are AWESOME!

      Delete
  2. Glad to hear that you want to see it again Emma - that's recommendation enough for me! I've caught hubby watching the trailers for it on TV, so I might be able to persuade him to come with me! x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Siobhan,

      Thank you, that's such a nice thing to say! :) I hope you can persuade your husband to see "Dark Shadows' with you. My husband enjoyed it.

      Delete
  3. Can't wait to see this Emma! =D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Annie,

      Between the amazing sets, the gorgeous costumes, the music, and the melodramatic Gothic storyline, I feel like I haven't even taken the whole experience in yet. I've really got to see it again!

      Delete
  4. Thanks for posting this Emma. When I saw the trailer I felt strangely drawn to buying this movie on DVD when it is available at Target (and I never feel strangely drawn to buying movies.) I guess it's the gothicness of it. And the seventies doesn't hurt either. The original show was on T.V. when I was a kid in old black and white video tape. I remember Barnabus Collins the vampire. But I was too little to really understand what was going on. So I guess I'll get the movie when it comes out. I expected it to be worse than the trailer but your saying it's better, so that's good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Matt,

      You're most welcome! :) I haven't seen you around Blogland lately, so it's good to hear from you again! I can't guarantee that you'll enjoy the movie, but it's definitely chock full of Gothic-y goodness! The trailers only really hint at one of the dimensions of the film, but to be fair, I really think this movie is too hard to sum up in a short promotional clip. You'll just have to see it and experience it for yourself. :)

      Delete
  5. Thanks for posting about this movie. I did see the original soap and loved it. I don't usually compare shows and movies. It takes the fun out of it. I am looking forward to watching this movie.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Adsila,

      I agree, it's best to judge movies like this on their own merits. I hope you enjoy it when you get around to seeing it!

      Delete
  6. Colleen is always amazing. Though I fear I might spend my entire first viewing of this film watching Michelle Pfeiffer. Wow. Just, wow.

    My mom wants to see this, so I might hold out for Mother's Day viewing. Awww- a gothy Mother's Day treat! Thanks for the (not a) review! ; )

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi pensive,

      Seriously, I couldn't take my eyes off Michelle Pfeiffer! Yes, she's older, but she's still stunningly beautiful, and thankfully, she hasn't messed with her face and turned freakish! Eva Green may be the new hot tamale, but in my opinion, Michelle Pfeiffer is still the queen!

      A "gothy Mother's Day treat" sounds just delightful! :)

      Delete
  7. Thanks! I'd plan to see it tomorrow and was hoping it was funny.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Mark,

      Well, it definitely appealed to my sense of humour, so I really hope you enjoy it too!

      Delete
  8. It just has to have Tim Burton's name slapped on it for me to love it but I have been waiting to see this movie since I first heard about it being made at the beginning of last year! I will be waiting for it to go to DVD before I watch it but from what I have seen of it so far I know I will love it! Who caaares if it doesn't do the original series justice - this is Tim Burton's work.. it doesn't have to make any kind of sense! Can't wait to see it! xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi VainGlorySinner,

      Yeah, I'm with you! I may not love all of Tim Burton's work equally - I have my special favourites - but he's a genius, and for me, he always manages to create magic through his filmmaking. I have the feeling you're going to absolutely love this film! :)

      Delete
  9. I can't wait to see this one. We're going to see it tomorrow after school. It sounds wonderful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jessica,

      I hope you have a great time! There are a couple of ghosties, as well as a vampire, in this movie! :)

      Delete
  10. I'm plannin on seeing this. I had actually said to my husband after the last Pirates movie was made that Depp would play a great vampire. It wasn't more than a month later I heard this was in the works. I did see the original soap. However, it was so long ago. I am not paying attention to the critics. I need to see this movie! Thanks for sharing the pics, Emma. This looks wonderful!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Lorelei,

      Well, you were absolutely right, Johnny Depp makes a fabulous vampire. That man has made an art form out of the raised eyebrow in 'Dark Shadows'. It's a pleasure to behold! ;)

      Yeah, I don't pay any attention to the critics either. 9 times out of 10, I love what they hate. I keep reading lately, that Tim Burton's, 'Corpse Bride' is considered to be a dud... I adored that movie!

      Delete
  11. I've tried to watch the original series and very much wanted to like it, but just couldn't get into it. Maybe if I had grown up with it I'd feel differently and I think it's better that he did something other than just a big screen version of the t.v. show. We don't need more of those. Thanks for the post, I'll be seeing it tomorrow.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Will,

      To the best of my knowledge, the original series of 'Dark Shadows' has never been shown in Australia, although the remake in the '90s was on here, but it was very short-lived. I'm guessing that there are references in the movie that fans of the series will understand, but it was also necessary for Tim Burton to make a movie that was going to be accessible for an audience that had never seen the TV show. I hope you enjoy the movie when you see it! :)

      Delete
  12. It does look like a good one! I love the make up effects.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Kweeny,

      'Dark Shadows' is worth it for the makeup, sets, and costumes alone! I'm determined not to give anything away, but there is a special effect involving Eva Green that, I thought, was just beyond cool!

      Delete
  13. I'm coming at it from the same perspective as you and am equally stoked to see it. I was planning to go tomorrow night and now I'm so glad I've read your blog post! I can't wait to eat up all the visual YUM with a spoon! (So to speak.) :-)

    Some Dark Romantic

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Mina,

      Thank you, and I hope you love it! Take a big spoon because there's a lot of visual YUM! :D

      Delete
  14. Hey! I'm finally getting around to reading your review. Nice photos you posted! Even if I wasn't into a bit of the plot, I'd see the movie just for the colorful Gothic visuals. It feels weird to say "colorful Gothic" but that's how I see it. I've probably already said all of this to you at other times, but here we go!

    I have seen some of the original Dark Shadows episodes. This movie, although totally different looking, should be a lot more entertaining than the original Dark Shadows! A lot of Tim Burton's work is controversial (for people who need to find controversy in everything) because he adds his own style. I remember lots of people having a problem with Burton's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. He certainly added his own twist, but I preferred it to the original. Yeah, I know I'm the only person on the planet who says that. ;) Tim Burton has a definite style and it seems that people either can't get enough of it or can't stand it! At least no one says he's bland or mediocre. Obviously, I'm in the can't-get-enough-of-it category and I'm really looking forward to seeing this movie!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Justine,

      Thanks! I've been collecting gorgeous 'Dark Shadows' images for a while and I finally got a chance to use them. :) "Colorful Gothic" is a very good description! Probably my favourite aspect of the movie is that all the dark, Gothic imagery is juxtaposed with pops of '70s music, colour and fashion. I really need to see the movie again because the visuals are so overwhelmingly lush that it's almost hard to take the story in properly. I think I'll get even more out of it on a second viewing.

      I completely agree with you about Tim Burton. I think a lot of the criticism is from people who just don't appreciate his avant-garde ideas. I love that he has a unique signature style and takes unpopular risks. And you're definitely not the only one who liked his 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory'! Given the choice, I'd rather watch the Burton version too, and it's actually more faithful to the spirit of Roald Dahl's story. It's not my favourite amongst all of Tim Burton's work, mainly because I like his more Gothic/spooky films the most, but all of his films are extraordinary in their own ways! I'm sure you already know that I'm well and truly (obsessively and compulsively) in the "can't-get-enough-of-it" category too! ;)

      Delete
  15. My hubby and I went to see the midnight release of this one. We loved it! Very well done with lots of hilarious moments. Definitely a buy when it is released on blu-ray. Great images! I'm glad to see you enjoyed it too!

    <3 Jess

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jess,

      Oh, I definitely enjoyed it and I'm really pleased you did as well! (I'm getting a bit weary of all the Burton hating surrounding this movie.) It's dark, stylish fun, and I'll be grabbing it when it comes out on DVD too!

      Delete
  16. Saw this movie yesterday. I loved the visuals and the story. I'm also a huge Tim Burton fan, and also Johnny Depp. I enjoyed every part of the movie. The best gothic/horror/comedy/melodramatic movie I've seen in my life yet. The OST of this movie is great too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Nagashiko,

      I'm glad you enjoyed it! 'Dark Shadows' is such a gorgeous spectacle and the melodrama of the story seems supremely appropriate for a movie based on a surreal soap opera. I also adored the soundtrack and can't wait to get hold of it!!

      Delete
  17. I wanted to see this movie, especially for the make up effects!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Zena,

      Even if the movie turns out to be not your thing, the makeup, costumes and effects are fantastic. I enjoyed the story, but it's worth it just for the visual experience! :)

      Delete
  18. My friends have promised to take me to see this film... have Not been to a theater in over ten years..... but I really want to see this ....I recorded most of the old series on VHS.....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Dr. Theda,

      Oh, I hope you get a chance to see 'Dark Shadows' and that you enjoy it, especially as you haven't been out to the movies in such a long time. :)

      Delete

Thank you so much for visiting and commenting!