For those who were disconcerted about the funny in the Dark Shadows trailer, I’d like to draw your memories back to Tim Burton’s Sleepy Hollow.
When I saw this film in the theater in 1999, I enjoyed it on a purely visual level. Christina Ricci is still one of the best alien-eyed Burton Blondes, Christopher Walken as the Hessian was casting genius, Miranda Richardson’s evil alpha beauty was used to its full fruition. With the help of Francis Ford Coppola as a producer, Tim Burton was able to take this American myth and make it his own. He fleshed out the tale, gave it a backstory, three dimensional characters and a world to live in that felt real. My one complaint about the film at first viewing was the some of the dialogue. Thanks to the infamous “I hate sand” scene in The Phantom Menance, I was very sticky when it came to love scenes with any kind of cliche dialogue. In the years that have passed, and upon viewing other of Burton’s movies, I’ve come to realize that the scene that bothered me so much - “You have bewitched me” - wasn’t cliche, it was in character.
This brings me to my point. Some people seem to be thrown off by how funny the Dark Shadows trailer is, mainly because the Dark Shadows tv show wasn’t a comedy. I don’t have a problem with it because I love Tim Burton’s sense of humour. Bohemea and I laughed so much and so loudly during Charlie and the Chocolate Factory that the children and parents around us in the theater were annoyed. What I want to remind everyone about is the character of Ichabod is Sleepy Hollow. Johnny Depp played great moments of comedy, horror and heroism all in one character. Tim Burton is able to do this with his main characters because he loves the hero’s journey, and uses it in almost every one of his films. This story structure allows a main character to be funny, brave, sad, scared, all of the most intense of emotions. So yes, Barnabas had his funny moments in the trailer but he also had moments of tragedy, horror, sadness, and bravery, like Ichabod Crane, like Sweeney Todd, like Edward Scissorhands.
Johnny Depp, Eva Green, Michelle Pfeiffer and Helena Bonham Carter in Dark Shadows
“…So I made up my mind I was going to find someone who would love me unconditionally three hundred and sixty five days a year, I was still in elementary school at the time - fifth or sixth grade - but I made up my mind once and for all.”
“Wow,” I said. “Did the search pay off?”
“That’s the hard part,” said Midori. She watched the rising smoke for a while, thinking. “I guess I’ve been waiting so long I’m looking for perfection. That makes it tough.”
“Waiting for the perfect love?”
“No, even I know better than that. I’m looking for selfishness. Perfect selfishness. Like, say I tell you I want to eat strawberry shortcake. And you stop everything you’re doing and run out and buy it for me. And you come back out of breath and get down on your knees and hold this strawberry shortcake out to me. And I say I don’t want it anymore and throw it out the window. That’s what I’m looking for.”
“I’m not sure that has anything to do with love,” I said with some amazement.
“It does,” she said. “You just don’t know it. There are time in a girl’s life when things like that are incredibly important.”
“Things like throwing strawberry shortcake out the window?”
“Exactly. And when I do it, I want the man to apologize to me. “Now I see, Midori. What a fool I have been! I should have known that you would lose your desire for strawberry shortcake. I have all the intelligence and sensitivity of a piece of donkey shit. To make it up to you, I’ll go out and buy you something else. What would you like? Chocolate Mousse? Cheesecake?”
“So then what?”
“So then I’d give him all the love he deserves for what he’s done.”
“Sounds crazy to me.”
“Well, to me, that’s what love is…”
Sombrer dans le passé. Oublié le présent. Partir loin pour se réfugier quelques siècles en arrière et laisser la folie nous envahir. Oublier de vivre puisque ça n’en vaut plus la peine. Sombrer plus encore, la réalité est insupportable. Doux délire, tu me manques lors de ces ellipses de clarté.
Trop d’évolution, trop de technologie, on a perdu nos valeurs. C’est du chacun pour soit. Il fut un temps où nous étions des grands hommes. Ce temps là est révolu.