FrankenweenieFeature Film |
Burton's sloppy pastiche of classic horror.
Tim Burton gives his 1984 live-action short Frankenweenie a stop-motion makeover, but rather than a return to his early glory offers more macabre mediocrity. The film focuses on young Victor Frankenstein, a boy who loves monster movies and science and uses inspirations from both to bring his recently deceased dog Sparky back to life. Unfortunately, no part of this Frankenstein-inspired movie feels lively or fresh. The gross gags might get chuckles from kids, but the humor is painfully dated, and the music and art design are so heavily reminiscent of Burton's past works he should be accused of self-plagiarism.
Beyond that, the narrative is riddled with plot holes and ultimately aimless with plot points having no payoffs and thereby no purpose. Being overrun by characters clearly voiced by Martin Short and Catherine O'Hara, its world feels small, and the characters themselves are lazy extrapolations from classic horror movies archetypes through Burton's warped but now standard lens, resulting in roughly realized roles with some that are downright racist--like a Japanese boy who is obsessed with his camera and creates a Godzilla-like monster. Finally, as the 3D loses much of its punch amid the movie's dingy greys, and its artistry falls well short of Burton's still awe-inspiring Nightmare Before Christmas, it isn't even worth seeing for sheer spectacle. In short, Frankenweenie fails to come alive.