Remember when Tim Burton films were good?

Discussion in 'General' started by Spit, Apr 21, 2012.

  1. Spit

    Spit Active Member

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    There was a time when I would have called myself a Tim Burton fan, but he hasn't done anything good for sooo long. It seems like every summer some new Tim Burton film comes out staring Johnny Deep being weird an effeminate, and I'm sick of it. I think Burton lost me at Sleepy Hollow, everything before that I can honestly say I enjoyed, and everything after that was crap. Have you guys lost faith in Tim Burton? If so when?

    Here is the list of stuff he has directed in order:

    Vincent
    Frankenweenie
    Pee-wee's Big Adventure
    Beetlejuice
    Batman
    Edward Scissorhands
    Batman Returns
    Ed Wood
    Mars Attacks!
    Sleepy Hollow
    Planet of the Apes
    Big Fish
    Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
    Corpse Bride
    Sweeney Todd
    9
    Alice in Wonderland
    Dark Shadows
     
  2. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    He jumped the shark with Planet of the Apes, no doubt, but I still liked Big Fish, Corpse Bride, and Sweeney Todd enough. Charlie and Alice not so much. Wasn't 9 really some other guy's film? The jury is still out on Dark Shadows. The trailer makes it out to be a comedy, but then again the trailer for Cabin in the Woods made it out to be a straight up horror film. We'll see...
     
  3. Myron Breck

    Myron Breck BOO!!! Gotcha!

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    I've been lamenting this issue for years. He lost me after MARS ATTACKS! but I actully loved SWEENEY TODD (which came as a complete surprise to me). The new trailer looks as awful as everything else he's been done after ED WOOD. It's actually quite depressing to me.
     
  4. dave13

    dave13 Well-Known Member

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    i think i dug everything he made up through and including sleepy hollow. i still like sleepy hollow. at the time, i loved mars attacks! as well. haven't seen it in years, so who knows how i'd feel now. after planet of the apes, i really lost interest. although i watched sweeny todd, corpse bride, and alice in wonderland, and none of them were terrible. im not huge on new musicals, so sweeny todd was a bit of a strain. i kind of enjoyed corpse bride, but can't really remember anything about it now that i think about it. alice in wonderland was...meh. not as bad as i had been expecting it to be. but yeah, i'm really sick of the whole burton/depp thing.
     
  5. JGrendel

    JGrendel New Member

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    Like others I lost interest after Planet of the apes which I'm surprised didn't star Johnny Depp.
     
  6. SickNick89

    SickNick89 Member

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    I loved Burtons early stuff. Sleepy Hollow was the turning point for me. The idea of Burton doing SH back in '99 sounded like a perfect pairing but then he kinda ruined it with all the silly crap he added to the story and not having the horseman carry around the jackolantern. After that it was all downhill for me mainly because of his annoying rufusal to think outside the box and cast ANYONE else besides Johnny Depp as the lead. He also seems too safe in his filmmaking. All his films while having those dark visiuals are just too safe and family friendly. I just feel like he's making the same film over and over, there is no seperation. The only time Burton has made a film that didn't feel exactly like all his other films was Big Fish.
     
  7. X-human

    X-human I ate my keys

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    Tim Burton's Secret Formula

    It seems quite clear that we can almost pin point exactly when it happened. I enjoy Sleepy Hollow although you could feel the CGI creep and in general a certain amount of fire missing from the belly. I think Mars Attacks! scared Tim Burton a little bit. While I enjoyed Mars Attacks! I can understand the limited appeal it has.

    He had a lot of financial success leading up to Mars Attacks! and Ed Wood was a huge critical success. But Warner was unhappy with Batman Returns (infamous for having children leaving in tears) and wanted him off of Batman. Then Mars Attacks! bombed both critically and financially for Warner. Part of its financial failure was following Independence Day instead of proceeding it theatrically. Also James and the Giant Peach failed financially. A terrible time for a filmmaker who up until that point could do no wrong.

    So Burton played it safer on Sleepy Hollow and took the money on Planet of the Apes to try and get another hit. While Apes was a financial hit it was a critical failure and ruined his chance to make The Death of Superman with a skidish Warner. He also left his long time muse Lisa Marie for Helena Bonham Carter after working with her on Planet of the Apes. Lisa said they never had a "break up"; after PotA he just never saw or spoke to her again. She didn't know why until friends told her about Helena. So this period was a turning point for Burton in more ways than one.

    Since then he's been chasing Hollywood's approval. His movies since 1996 have been very safe bets. There's a certain amount of weirdness to them so it's easy for people to misinterpret them as risky but Burton has become much like Quentin Tarantino; a master at "auteur" coating standard Hollywood crap. (QT also made a nearly identical artistic U-turn about the same time to come to think of it...)

    Planet of the Apes is median level for Hollywood. It was bad for Tim Burton but not even close to the worst that Hollywood can produce. Big Fish was typical Oscar bait. Charlie and Alice were clearly for the money. Corpse Bride was a lifeless rehash of Nightmare Before Christmas (which was still having theatrical success in 3D). I saw Sweeney Todd to be much like Sleepy Hollow, his goth geekiness masquerading as the same Hollywood dreck. But the music was awful and the CGI wasn't much better. Although I've considered his recent output as at least entertaining this was unwatchable in my book.

    Dark Shadows is looking to be much like Sleepy Hollow and Sweeney Todd. So long as there's no singing I'll probably consider it as entertaining as the rest of his recent output. I'm more worried about Frankenweenie. He's taken a huge step back to rekindle his first live action success. Yet he's doing it in stop motion which I don't have much faith in him directing. By dusting off an old idea he's already done successfully (as a kid beating the odds at Disney of all places) I think he's made a big mistake. Although people may still gobble it up it's a new low for Burton.

    It seems less likely he'll be able to pull himself back up artistically after Frankenweenie. A couple of horror themed films in a row? He's painting himself into a corner many directors are desperately trying to get out of. I've long given up hope that he'll get out of this funk.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012
  8. Anthropophagus

    Anthropophagus Well-Known Member

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    Ed Wood and Sleepy Hollow were brilliant, everything else leaves me cold.
     
  9. bigdaddyhorse

    bigdaddyhorse Detroit Hi-on

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    I kinda like Burton's Apes for a change of pace. I really dug Sweeny Todd also, which is a complete shock as I fucking hate musicals, hate them with a passion.
    Corpse Bride was fun for what it was, but Wonderland was shitte at best. 9 was airight I guess, but didn't leave much of impression on me. Charlie should never have happened.

    I really only don't like Alice and Charlie. Big Fish I need to give another chance, wasn't an instant favorite by any means. Haven't seen the first 2 or Dark Shadows, but at least like most of what he's done. Sleepy Hollow, Mars Attacks and Beetlejuice are my favs, with Ed Wood very close to fav status. I loved his Batman films, but they feel a bit cheaper and sillier with each viewing.
     
  10. buck135

    buck135 Kanamit

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    To me Batman (1989) is timeless. Michelle Pffeifer makes Batman Returns, but Danny DeVito and Christopher Walken kill it (IMO). The jury is out on whether or not Dark Shadows will be any good, but his other films just seem to have great scenes.
     
  11. Dobby

    Dobby Well-Known Member

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    Tim Burton sucks no doubt about that. I have no desire to see anymore of his movies. Sleepy Hallow was his last and final great film.
     
  12. Spit

    Spit Active Member

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    Ha! your right, my bad. I'm 2-0 for film knowledge this week. A few days ago I thought Gillian Anderson was in Candyman :rolleyes:

    Seeing a lot of love for Sleepy Hollow on here that I didn't expect. Maybe I'll have to give the film another chance.

    I had no idea that Batman Returns was such a flop, I seriously loved that movie as a kid and didn't know it had a reputation for making kids cry.
     
  13. shape22

    shape22 Well-Known Member

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    I like everything Burton did through Big Fish to some degree. But I haven't liked anything since. And the trailer for Dark Shadows is one of the worst ever. I frequently find myself asking "who the hell wants to see this movie?" while watching trailers. With that one I can't imagine ANYONE thinking "damn I want to see that!" The whole thing looks so obvious, uninspired, and generally ill-conceived. Despite their long partnership I'm honestly shocked that Depp was interested in participating.

    As far as Pfeiffer in Batman Returns. I think she was terribly miscast. Stand her next to Julie Newmar and she'd look like a 12-year-old. BOY. Burton's first Batman is still a really enjoyable film for me. It seems terribly campy now compared to the Nolan films. But it's still a lot of nostalgic fun for me.

    Ed Wood is easily Burton's best film and one of my all-time favorites in general. Unfortunately I can't picture him making anything remotely that moving again. His movies seem like pure product now. It's a shame.
     
  14. Mikey Horror

    Mikey Horror Active Member

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    Ed Wood is one of my all time favorite flicks and by far, in my opinion, Burton's best work. I honestly doubt he'll ever top that one. Sleepy Hollow was pretty good, but other than that I'm not really a fan of anything else in his catalog.
     
  15. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    Well, funny enough, just last night as I was going in to see Cabin in the Woods for the second time I noticed a huge cardboard display for Dark Shadows. I overheard from the late high school/college age lipstick queen just ahead of me say "I really want to see that". So yeah, there's always somebody. It'll probably wind up being a huge hit, much to our collective chagrin.
     
  16. shape22

    shape22 Well-Known Member

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    No doubt you're right. As for that girl, I'm glad she'll have some intellectual stimulation while she's waiting for the next Michael Bay film.
     
  17. buck135

    buck135 Kanamit

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    I agree with you there. No one looked better in the catwoman outfit than Julie Newmar. You have to admit though, not even the animated series did the character justice when it it comes to wielding a whip.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2012
  18. Anaestheus

    Anaestheus Well-Known Member

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    I think I've said this elsewhere, but I really wish that Burton would stop directing and just hire himself out as a set designer. I have always loved the look of his films, even if he is stuck in a bit of groove. But, as a director, I have always found that his pacing is uneven at best, his motifs are cliche, and his themes are simplistic and naive. When watching his films, I am usually reminded of the Simpsons episode with Smashing Pumpkins where Billy Corgan says that "making teenagers depressed is like shooting fish in a barrel."

    That said, I did like Pee-Wee's Big Adventure and Beetlejuice. I thought Sweeney Todd was good, but most of that I attribute to Sondheim being at his most awesome.
     
  19. _pi_

    _pi_ Peace, bitch

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    Wow, take it easy on the Dark Shadows hate! The film isn't even out yet!

    I'm one of those sad souls who saw the trailer and thought to myself, this looks fun - I want to see that.

    From the looks of the trailer, Burton seems to having fun for the first time in ages. There seems to be a certain looseness about the trailer, and a tongue-in-cheek-ness to the performances that is refreshing. Visually, it seems very interesting to me.

    I haven't liked much of his output since Sleepy Hollow (with the exception of Sweeney Todd, which was fantastic) so I'm not expecting this to be amazing. But I have to say, watching that trailer really made me giddy for a new Burton film, which is something that I haven't felt in years.

    So, my apologies on behalf of the people who enjoyed the trailer and actually look forward to the film. Some of us might be idiots and intellectually challenged, but not all of us I hope. We can't all be as smart as you. (I do like it how the connection between "college age lipstick girl" and "wanting to see Dark Shadows" leads to the assumption of her being a Michael Bay fan. Now that's some deep insight shiz.)
     
  20. shape22

    shape22 Well-Known Member

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    No offense intended Pi. I apologize. As a certified bad movie lover I certainly don't want to position myself as someone with highbrow, superior taste. If I did I've have to stop watching Death Wish 3 all the time.
     

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