Corpse Bride, the - Burton's on a Roll

Duration: 90min
Category: family
Available: On DVD
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I had so much fun at Charlie and the Chocolate Factory that I almost went into The Corpse Bride sceptical that Burton could entertain me so well again. I mean, this is the man who made the Planet of the Apes remake. Could lighting really strike twice for Burton after how magical The Nightmare Before Christmas was?

Still, I am such a softy for animation of all forms, and I have a special place in my heart for stop-motion, so I eagerly, albeit with trepidation, trotted down to The Corpse Bride on opening day.

I now know I should not have doubted the master. The Corpse Bride is a delight from the first frame. Here is what makes it so great:

The Story
The greatest thing about The Corpse Bride is its story which manages to both exist in the tradition of fable without in any way being condescending. Like with Nightmare before it, Burton has found a way to fit into genre while expanding beyond it.

The moral is both straight forward and remarkable. The narrative is both surprising and natural. And the dialogue is both witty and classic. This is classic story telling and I ate it up!

The Music
Both Elfmanís score and the songs he has crafted show that he is at the top of his game. Elfman is one of the hardest working writers in show business but he doesnít let that stop him. Clever lyrics and smart melodies adorn the scenes with a timeless quality that adds to the magic.

The Look
One thing a Burton film always has going for it is the art direction. This is especially true in the case of his animated film and The Corpse Bride is no exception. From the design of the Characters to the scope of the landscapes, The Corpse Bride is exquisitely beautiful.

While this is the kind of movie to own and watch over and over, you must see this on the big screen to really appreciate its beauty.

Burtonís Special Touches
I especially love how the land of the living is painted in drab shads of grey while the land of the dead is vibrantly alive with colour. This is the kind of mainstream shake-up that Burton is good at. While his films may be a bit off, they are still accessible enough for the most mainstream of audiences.

The only criticism I have is that itís as short as it is. I understand that stop-motion animation is a long a tedious process but I could have sat in that theatre for longer.

I hope that Burton doesnít give up on this form of film making. I am ready for another journey into his worlds.

Review By: Collin Smith

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