If you're not knitting, the terrorists win

(My mostly on-topic ramblings about knitting. And life in general. My life in specific.)

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Location: Indiana, United States

I'm a middle aged mother of 2 grown children and wife to a man who doesn't seem to mind my almost heroin-like yarn addiction. I spend my time writing, knitting, and generally stressing out.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Movie Review: Dark Shadows

Part of the Mother's Day Extravaganza was my choice of movies. I was really torn between Avengers and Dark Shadows. I chose the latter, mainly because I knew I could always get T, R, and M to go see The Avengers with me.

It's a little hard to explain Dark Shadows--the real DS, not the Tim Burton film--to a younger person. They just don't get it. Maybe it's that they are used to a higher quality production, even in a TV soap? Maybe because they are used to better special effects, more takes, etc? I don't know. I keep telling them, it's not that the original show was so good... It wasn't art, after all.

R and M both said the movie was "Kinda crappy." I tend to agree.

I really wanted to like it. I was so excited to hear it was being remade. And that Tim Burton was remaking it. I thought, T-dog (That's what I call him. We go way back.) will surely pump in some cash-bucks investments and this thing will really be gorgeous! And the cast! Depp, Pfeiffer, Jackie Earle Haley (who I am really appreciating as a dramatic actor these days, btw), Chloe Kickass Moretz (also, excellent actor)--how could you go wrong?

And Seth Grahame Smith wrote the screenplay. So I really expected something dark and brooding, with just a touch of black humor. Something more Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (which I read) and less Beetlejuice (which I do love, but for different reasons).

Then, I saw the trailer. And I was worried. But, I thought, you know how movie trailers are. They only have the stuff the marketing department thinks will appeal to the most people. And I had read that Johnny Depp was a big fan of the original Dark Shadows. So, surely, Burton didn't completely miss the point and make this all one big fish-out-of-water joke?

I wish I could tell you differently.

If only Johnny Depp had brought the intensity we know he is capable of to Barnabus. If only Seth Grahame Smith had watched even one episode of the original (so that he would see the depth and complexity of the characters he was writing). If only Tim Burton had decided to make a film even half as enjoyable and thought-provoking as Edward Scissorshands... Frankly, I feel as if they all just phoned it in.

And I'm not just one of those people who think nothing should ever be remade or re-envisioned. (I've watched all the Batman, Terminator, and Star Trek reboots, after all and I'm ok with all of them.) But listen, the Dark Shadows TV series from the early 90's was better than this.

Lest you think I didn't enjoy anything of this movie, I did think the sets were beautiful. And the characters all looked good. Most of the actors performed well. And the music was good. That was probably the best part of the movie. (But why didn't they use the theme song, I wonder?) It really was only the writing, directing, Depp's and Bonham-Carter's chewing up the scenery, and the ridiculous and tedious sex scenes that I had a problem with.


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