By BOP Staff
March 29, 2012
Brett Beach: I got off some splendid laughs (and I have never seen any iterations of the TV series). It looks to me like Burton is in Mars Attacks! mode, which promises at the very least bizarre humor, memorable set pieces, and hopefully a willingness to not care too much if some audiences find it offputting or simply ridiculous. Without a big name like Depp anchoring it, I would probably peg this to make about as much as Mars did. But their partnership can convince viewers to take a chance on almost anything.
Max Braden: I've also never seen the original series so I was wondering where the setup was going. Burton's films have always had a quirky sense of "I'm weird and I know it" but I think they've been more sincerely drama than comedy. Dark Shadows pushes the line on the comedy right up to silliness and reminds me of Death Becomes Her. At first I was concerned it wouldn't work, but I was laughing by the end. It's more like Barry Sonnenfeld's version of The Addams Family geared for a more mature audience but still accessible to kids. I can't decide if I'm more interested in Eva Green's performance or in Chloe Moretz's performance.
Reagen Sulewski: Wait a minute...This film is set in 1972, yet uses Barry White's My First, My Last, My Everything, which was written in 1974? What sorcery is this?! Personally I find this whole thing baffling, as it's all over the place in tone, from camp to parody to farce, and audiences have never really responded well to camp in a big way. I guess Johnny Depp and Tim Burton are spending their blockbuster cards on a pet project, and it's good they're seemingly enjoying themselves, but expecting us to indulge them on this is probably a mistake.
Edwin Davies: Before seeing the trailer, I was worried that Burton was going to treat the source material in an overly serious manner, which doesn't seem fitting since, based on what I've heard, the Dark Shadows TV show is pretty awful. I was delighted to see that they have gone for a light, campy tone that seems like it could be, well, fun. There are a lot of crazy elements on display, which makes me think that, even with Depp and Burton, it might not be a big hit, but then again it feels like something they've made for a laugh, which appeals to me. I've gone from having no interest in it to being actually quite excited to check it out.
Shalimar Sahota: Visually there is some crazy stuff going on here, and I like the use of the 1970s tracks, but I'm a little lost as to the goal of Depp's character Barnabas, unless it's just him making do with life in 1972. I understand that Burton and Depp are fans of the original TV series, which would explain the film's existence, but I don't know if I'd want to join them on this ride.