FRANKENWEENIE (2012)

FRANKENWEENIE

Original Idea & Directed By: Tim Burton
Written By: John August
Based On The Original Screenplay By: Leonard Ripps
Cinematography By: Peter Sorg
Editor: Mark Solomon & Chris Lebenzon
Music By: Danny Elfman 

Cast: (Voices) Charlie Tahan, Atticus Shaffer, Martin Short, Catherin O’Hara, Winona Ryder, Martin Landau, Conchetta Ferrell, Tom Kenny

When young Victor’s pet dog Sparky (who stars in Victor’s home-made monster movies) is hit by a car, Victor decides to bring him back to life the only way he knows how. But when the bolt-necked “monster” wreaks havoc and terror in the hearts of Victor’s neighbors, he has to convince them (and his parents) that despite his appearance, Sparky’s still the good loyal friend he’s always been.

While creative and cute, this film feels like an excuse or experiment for Tim Burton To go back to his animation roots. Going back into his obsessions of apparently improving to his rare short film that started his career as well as include the design of his AMAZING STORIES episode and short lived TV series AMERICAN DOG. While being able to add to his gothic animated films. One of Tim Burton ‘s famed director trademarks is absent from this movie. Most Burton movie opening credits “follow” a person or object, this one’s credits do not.

It has all of the Tim Burton hallmarks FRANKENSTEIN and classic horror film references as well as a gothic macabre humor and characters though this film feels like many of his recent films. That it’s made out of less artistic endeavors and passion of vision and more out of commerce to sell products to children and females. I understand get the next generation audience while they are still young and impressionable.

Tim Burton’s first film since Big Fish not to feature Johnny Depp, and his first since Sleepy Hollow not to feature Helena Bonham Carter.

The film’s release spawned a fan theory, this film, and Burton’s other two stop motion animated films, corpse bride and the nightmare before Christmas, all are taking place in a shared continuity, and tell one big story spanning several centuries, and the possibility that Victor Frankenstein and sparky are descendants of Victor Dort and scraps from corpse bride.

Winona Ryder and Tim Burton’s 3rd collaboration. Their previous one, Edward Scissorhands was 21 years earlier. A turtle named “Shelley” is buried in the pet cemetery. Mary Shelley wrote “Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus,” the novel on which this film is loosely based

Tim Burton created the Weird Girl (“Staring Girl”) in his book “The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories”

Persephone the poodle is named after the Greek nature goddess who was kidnapped by and forcibly married to Hades, god of the underworld and lord of the dead. .

It also feels like he has run out of original story ideas he had quite an inspired few in the past, but now it seems his films while having his artistic touch don’t have thy spirit of him. Like he has lost his way and is just coasting on filler. Turning the story and design to his idiom and desires. Now it seems like he adds his touches, but is really repeating himself or copying himself with what he wants to show. With the least amount of effort.

It’s sad I used to once be a huge fan and still believe he has it in him though he doesn’t have to prove himself as he has done many times. I even feel bad saying this as I have met him and he treated me very kindly.

While this feels autobiographical stretching his short and experience that happens to us all in childhood into a full blown fairy tale, hence the limitations are endless with animation. Should have been a fuller work especially when the hackers are off and you have permission to two the film wherever you wish to.

Though i am beating a dead horse, with funds and technology not available when he began his career. After all this could have originally even his plan all along until he didn’t have the funds, nor the film to make an animated feature back then. One of the problems with the film is that the original short said everything it needed to by making it animated and longer sure he is able to make it as big as he wants to, but while the film allows him to pay homage to those who inspired him. The story just feels like filler and saps the energy down of what hours have been a fun excursion. The original was so lively and fun. Here it doesn’t feel special. It just feels like this is just existing with no real passion or reason behind it.

Despite all of this he truly is a visionary, but unlike filmmakers such as Guillermo Del Toro entrusting his work with passion, vision and personality. He seems to be on standby or a stand still as if he’s doing just enough as he has prove. Himself. Now he only Intends to introduce the audience to what inspires him or what e is a fan of. While not adding any distinct quality or vision, just appears to try and copy it or remake it. It angers me and makes me sad at the same time. As I witness this. Maybe as his career got bigger during my life one and I took note of his films ever since I saw PEE WEE’S BIG ADVENTURE as at the time he was the only filmmaker who came close to making films seem like cartoons and managed later on to ad a dark sensibility and more emotions. That truly represented what it was like to be an outsider which happened to coincide with me hitting my early teenage years.

With this film I was hoping or more of a return to form and this is in the right direction. Reuniting with cast members he has worked with before of course in voice only roles but it counts.

It’s like being a teacher and watching one of your best students stop applying himself. He is still getting passable grades. Though you can tell the quality is poor and their heart doesn’t seem into it at all and you know they can do better.

This feels almost like a snack in the face to his audience and fans. The modern godfather o dark fantasy film rebels or sells out.

Maybe as Mr.Burton has had children heirs sensibilities and motivations have changed. He is trying to bring them his obsessions make them over for his kids to understand and be entertained by figuring if it works for them it should work for the audiences as maybe make then become interested in the origins of them.

Grade: C

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