Author Topic: Depp Shadows-5 Years Later  (Read 637 times)

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Offline The Doctor and K9

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Depp Shadows-5 Years Later
« on: May 10, 2017, 04:37:07 AM »
I met with some friends this weekend to watch the 2012 Dark Shadows film. They are not Dark Shadows fans, but we have watched the first two films and various episodes of the two TV series. Their reactions were mixed. The general concensus was that the movie needed a unified direction. The dark comedy did not work for them. As one said, it was not silly enough to ignore the fact that Barnabas should have burned up being out in the daylight. She was unconvinced about the umbrella's ability to protect, clouds or no.

For me, I've always had a love hate relationship with that film. I usually either like something or I don't. I can be indifferent. This one is different. I absolutely love some parts of the film, and I loathe certain other parts. I was not completely unhappy with the comedic tone. I thought the McDonalds arches scene was brilliant. I loved almost everything gag associated with Barnabas becoming acquainted with the 20th Century.

There were two aspects I despised. Jonathan Frid described the essence of Barnabas as living a lie, keeping his awful secret. He also brought up the urge to drink blood as an addiction. Burton got the latter right. I was constantly annoyed with Barnabas prancing around telling everyone who would listen that he's a vampire. This guy got buried alive for being a vampire and then as soon as he's unearthed, he blabs his secret to the world? It made him seem like a total idiot.

I also hated the sex scene with Angelique. After all she did to him and his family, he's able to feel passionately towards her?  Yes, he does say he's going to defile her, but at the end he apologizes for not being able to love her!

Burton's interpretation marred the film for me, but they did not spoil it completely. I love the relationship between Victoria and Barnabas. I was intrigued by how Julia was treated. The opening scenes were fantastic. I was enjoying the whole movie immensely until he appeared in daylight yakking about his secret.

My reactions soared into the upper reaches of the atmosphere and plummetted to the depths of the oceans so many times watching that film. Most of the ending worked for me, but I could have done without the vomit scene. It did not gross me out or offend me. It just looked fake and silly. I thought Angelique's death scene was very touching. Carolyn as a werewolf? Hmmm intriguing but out of left field and pretty much unnecessary. But we got to see Laura and she was foreshadowed adequately. She didn't come off as a deus ex machina.

This film is unique with its abilities to elicit strong and contradictory reactions from me. I would like it more if Depp had consistently portrayed Barnabas and not some generic vampire. The jealously guarded secret has been a cornerstone of every version of DS from the OS, to the Ross novels, the comics, the comic strip, the previous movies, and the 91 series. I enjoyed watching it again though. It's certainly a personal classic in spite of the diverse reactions it provokes.

Offline Patti Feinberg

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Re: Depp Shadows-5 Years Later
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2017, 05:48:43 AM »
Funny to see this particular topic today (Mother's Day).
We knew the Depp cover was coming out and, my family all went to see it together on Mother's Day.

It is to date the ONLY time all five of us went to the same movie.

(Only one comes closest is "Toy Story 2".)

Patti
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Offline Barnababy

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Re: Depp Shadows-5 Years Later
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2017, 09:52:00 PM »
I own myself a coward.  Well, maybe not that bad, but I admit to not watching all of this movie yet.  I've seen parts over the years.  Agreed with everything about Jonathan and the character of Barnabas.  Bottom line, I used to really love Johnny Depp back in the day and deplore what he sunk to.  I sat patiently through his trashing of Willie Wonka, but Barnabas Collins was my first love, and trashing him is a line I just will not cross.  (Cross.  Haha.  Didn't like Ben Cross's portrayal either but at least it wasn't outrageously bad!)  I watched parts of the movie and thought of it as I do of a lot of current movies:  well done as far as sets, costumes, and special effects, even some good acting when properly directed, but no costumer, set designer, nor actor can make up for bad writing!  Yet the original Dark Shadows had a quality which made it often great even when the writers got sort of lost.  I watch many older movies and shows and then new ones and am still at a loss to explain this.  I am not absolutely opposed to remakes but can't stand to see something I really loved, just trashed!

Offline Uncle Roger

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Re: Depp Shadows-5 Years Later
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2017, 10:18:18 PM »
I enjoyed the film at the time. While I saw it in the theatre multiple times, I haven't seen the entire film since then. The film does an excellent job of recreating the period. The photography is excellent and I love the first 15 minutes or so. My issues with the movie are ones that I have with a lot of Tim Burton films. They look gorgeous but seem to lack any cohesive plot. They just seem to move from tangent to tangent until it's time for the finish.
I never felt that the film was made with hardcore fans in mind. DS fandom is smaller than Star Trek. Fans are extremely devoted but largely unorganized and unfocused.
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Offline Barnababy

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Re: Depp Shadows-5 Years Later
« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2017, 10:22:48 PM »
Also wish to mention of several fine aspects of the film I noted, I did not mention makeup.  Depp's makeup as Barnabas was even more hideous than his portrayal.  Neither should have been approved.