Monday, December 24, 2007

Bloody brilliant

Well, that was just…killer. “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street” is without a doubt the darkest, bloodiest, angriest Christmas release I’ve ever loved. While the timing is a tad twisted (Soylent Green is meat pies, now bring on the figgy pudding?), you’ve got to admire Tim Burton and company’s moxie in bringing one of the most iconic, gory American musicals to gorgeous, grisly life on the big screen. They sing, they seethe, they slash! What is it about a little cannibalism that always gets me in the holiday spirit?

What made it so great? The story (a shave and a haircut, two cuts). The singing (fine, so they’re not professional, but that doesn’t mean they weren’t damn effective). The art direction (save for the brilliant splashes of blood, it almost looked with a old-fashioned black-and-white picture). The Johnny. The Helena. Really, I can’t think of two more perfectly cast people for the roles of Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett.

While Johnny Depp is getting most of the ink for his singularly intense portrayal of a man hell-bent (literally) on revenge, Helena Bonham Carter gives the story its melancholy heart. Plus, dude, her décolletage is practically a character all its own. Pretty soon it’s going to start demanding a film credit. And even though she is made up to look like a deranged ghost who fell in with the goth kids who hang out by the 7-Eleven, she has hardly looked lovelier. What can I say, death becomes her.

p.s. I concur, Anthony and Johanna were by far the film’s weakest parts (though, ironically, its best voices).


Linda said...

Agree on all counts, saw this film yesterday. Carter and young Ed Sanders (Toby) deserve more attention for their performances. I was impressed!

jennifer from pittsburgh said...

We saw this movie over the weekend and loved it. Yes, I famously hate musicals, but this is like the bridge between the land of dance and singing and the island of the damned :)

Anonymous said...

I liked it. Plus, I was in the mood for a holiday movie such as this one. Depp was good. Timothy Spall is probably one of the best character actors working. Ed Sanders, as mentioned, did quite well.

Ms. B-C (and her décolletage) was icing on top of all that.

Anonymous said...

I too enjoyed it but I wished they cast someone else as the young sailor. Honestly, I could not believe that he really wanted that girl. It would've been more believable if he wanted Sweeney Todd. I do give him props for his excellent singing - it kind of put Johnny and Helena to shame.


Anonymous said...

I was not impressed at all. What, was it supposed to be a Japanese horror flick? I thought Helena was great acting wise, but I wasn't impressed with Johnny Depp, and the girl who played Joanna was awful, as was the guy.

the redeeming factor I thought was the little boy: it was the only time I appreciated the artistic liberty they took in casting.

Then again, I am a college theater major, and musical theater is my passion, so I had to be a little critical... but i was so ready to love it!

WordNerd said...

I thought it was excellent too. About the cleavage -- my friend's comment afterward was, "Wow, when they sing, their boobs really heave."

Merry Christmas!