Movie review: Dark Shadows (2012)

Dark and quirky Tim Burton’s style + Sexy and funny Johnny Depp’s performance + Story on curse and vampire = 2012’s Dark Shadows

The above equation basically rounds up my opinion over the entire movie, the latest by the acclaimed director, Tim Burton. Dark Shadows tells the story of a wealthy and handsome man, cursed by a witch lady to be an imprisoned vampire, set free around 200 years later and returns to his ancestral home, where his dysfunctional descendants are in need of his protection. Well, the background story is quite fascinating and that drives me to watch the movie. Of course, Johnny Depp is the another reason.

Johnny Depp would not disappoint everyone with his solid performance in many movies including this one. What’s more to that is his superb portrayal of so many different appearances to engage with the characters he had in many films he starred in before. Whenever he portrays anything, there must be some sort of interesting style on him and that makes him look far sexy and attractive. This time, he had to appear as a vampire. Another refreshing look is given to him, in short hair, pale face, neat costume and long fingers. And that looks good. I have no comment for his acting; extremely well done. He nailed every characters he had before, including this one as a vampire.

I like how his character has to deal with the changes after almost 200 years of not seeing the world. There are some hilarious scenes there within the dark and serious tone of the film, but that amount is not much. I expected this movie to be nice and distinctive but there are quite a number of people commented that this film is some sort of a failure compared to Tim Burton’s previous films in collaboration with Johnny Depp. Well, I didn’t watch movies of them collaborating before, and so I can’t comment much on it and I have to go with the majority’s view on it.

And yes, I have to say there are some boring parts in the film, and I have the feeling of not wanting to pay serious attention at some point. Things just don’t go excited or interesting all the way, while the constantly dark visual throughout the whole film would gets the audiences to feel tired and moody at the same time. The only thing that saves the film is Johnny Depp obviously, and also of course the witch in the story. Without her, there wouldn’t be even a story on the vampire to talk about. Eva Green did quite a good job on portraying as the main villain in the film too. But I expect more usage of dark magic by the witch, and I’m left disappointed from this aspect in the end. For other characters, I think they are pretty one-dimensional. It’s quite boring on the story’s development, but the ending climax saves, only a bit. Out of 10 points, I rate ‘Dark Shadows’ a total of 6.3. It’s not Johnny Depp’s fault. Tim Burton’s fault, maybe?



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