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'Dark Shadows' review: great lines, laughs

May 11, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
Johnny Depp teams with director Tim Burton for the eighth time, sinking his teeth into the role of vampire Barnabus Collins.

Depp clearly has a lot of fun playing Collins, a vampire who returns home many, many years after a witch he wouldn't love put him in a coffin six feet under, and Eva Green is good playing bad here.

In typical Tim Burton fashion, it's a little exaggerated, a little avant-garde and it's with a nice wink to the audience that, yeah, she's evil, but isn't it amusing?

"Dark Shadows" tells a cool story, and the writing is a kick. What does work is the spectacle of it all. There's no mistaking that this is a Tim Burton production, so Burton fans won't be disappointed.

Both Helena Bonham Carter, as the family psychiatrist, and Michelle Pfeiffer as the Collins matriarch, add extra life to the quirky mix of characters. They know their stuff.

But it's the vampire from the 1700s who's suddenly living in 1972 who gets the best lines.

The director loved the old TV show, and fans should feel that. The material is, at times, edgy and silly. There may be more style than substance, but I think that's OK because the movie is also very funny and very clever.

One thing I really love about this movie is how it captures 1972 with the music, clothes, lava lamps and macrame. Look for the Tim Burton twist at the local theater - it's playing "Deliverance."

This movie made me smile and laugh. It's very visual and a whole lot of fun.


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