Ten Thousand Bytes of Cinematic Critique
With success on Beetlejuice and Batman, Tim Burton co-wrote and produced another quirky goth film, this time creating the story of an android who was left unfinished. Why a scientist would put sharp, deadly blades in place of fingers is a bit of a mystery, but that's part of the oddball quality of Edward Scissorhands.The story begins with an Avon lady who visits a scary, old mansion and finds Edward, a goth girl's wet dream. She brings him home into her hyperconformed, sterilized suburban world. The neighborhood gives a serious nod to the 1950s, but its splashed up with pastels and other anachronistic touches. It all works, to an extent. The film also has a wonderful cast, with Johnny Depp in the title role. Winona Ryder, still in her knock out hot years, plays the daughter of the family Edward is staying with. Robert Oliveri (Nick Szalinski from the Honey I... series), Anthony Michael Hall, the legendary Vincent Price, Alan Arkin, and Conchata Ferrell (the maid on Two and a Half Men) help round out the cast. Director Tim Burton recruited his frequent collaborator, Danny Elfman, to craft the soundtrack. It's typical Elfman, but not necessarily his best work. Despite all this, the film falls a little short of greatness. Some of the characters progress and develop really well, but others are very wooden and stereotypical (not intentionally stereotypical like the neighborhood). Some of the changes are also a bit forced, and the resolution and ending are a bit silly and not what I would expect from someone as creative as Tim Burton. Edward Scissorhands is the story of a strange and unusual entity introduced into an otherwise run of the mill community. It's a solid premise with great ideas, and the film is worth renting, but it falls just short of being a top quality film.
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