Apr. 20th, 2008

angelophile: (Shaun - That's Just Wrong)

Watched Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street tonight, which was an entertain, bloody romp. Absolutely dripping with gore, it certainly suited Tim Burton's taste for gothic horror and the movie played to his strength as a director and looked simply wonderful - all gloom and doom, washed out colours, enlivened by the spray of arterial blood and a delightful romp on the beach.

The cast certainly seemed to be having as much fun as the director. The leads, Johnny Depp (once again flexing his Mockney accent) and Helena Bonham Carter gave it their all, all black eyeliner and murderous intent. The supporting cast all played their roles with wonderful relish, particularly Sacha Baron Cohen, pimping it up as a rival barber. Although he's overshadowed in my mind by Tim Spall, always a delight, but this time so deliciously sleazy, so oozing with villainy as the henchmen to the corrupt judge that he came close to slobbering on occasion. Simply wonderful. You could, perhaps, argue that Alan Rickman underplayed his role. He has a certain world weariness about him and a near nobility that, perhaps made him more sympathetic than a corrupt, near-murderous, rapist, sexial deviant should be.

A wonderful plot, too, Burton not holding back at all with the gore and horror.

However, I must admit I can see why this took so long to come to the big scrreen because, to be honest, as a musical it isn't that great. Some will probably disagree but I found the songs weak, the tone uncertain, no tunes you could sing along too and awkward arrangements. The highlight being Todd and Lovett's black comedy number about the content of their pies, but I felt the rest of the movie could have benefited from some of that black humour, which was only evident in that number and Mrs Lovett's solo about her dream life with Todd. Apart from that it was all just black rather than revelling in how deliciously wicked the story was, which was a bit of a disappointment. But the lack of convincing music was the biggest weakness for me.

Technically, however, probably Burton's most accomplished movie, even more sumptuous than Sleepy Hollow and with all the cast giving it their all and revelling in the bloody story.

July 2013


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