Sunday, July 02, 2006

Hello, Avon Calling.....

This film is truly beautiful! Edward Scissorhands (1990) was directed by Tim Burton. The film is a direct product of Burton and his fascination with outcasts. When in high school Tim drew a cartoon of Scissorhands and years later was able to see him come to life in this film.

Tim Burton has a knack for using the same actors in his films. Scissorhands, is played by Johnny Depp and his love interest, Kim Boggs is played by Winona Ryder. Depp would later work with Burton again on the films, Ed Wood and Sleepy Hollow. Ryder was Tim's leading lady in BeetleJuice. Vincent Price (The Inventor) worked previously with Burton on earlier film Vincent on which Price was narrator.

The film is centered around Edward Scissorhands, a "boy" created by Price in his laboratory. Before Price can complete Scissorhands, he has a heart attack and dies. Scissorhands lives out the rest of his days in solitude until Peggy Boggs shows up to sell some Avon. She takes interest in him and brings him down to the pastel suburbs to live with her family. The film focuses on Scissorhands and how he does not fit in anywhere in this other world. He desperately wants to love Kim and be loved but it is not possible.

One great thing about this film is Johnny Depp. When he came into this film he was fresh off of the set of TV series, 21 Jumpstreet. He was certainly teen pin up material and but was not know for his acting talent. In Edward Scissorhands, Depp only says 169 words, focusing more on his ability to get his characters' emotions across to viewers. This film was a early peek into the character acting ability that Depp posses as we have seen in such recent films as Pirates of the Caribbean.

Set design and make up also make the film what it is. As evidenced in Nightmare Before Christmas, Tim Burton is a stickler for unusual, dark characters and images. The stark contrast of the pastel, cookie cutter homes of suburbia only emphasizes how different Scissorhands is from them. The world of Edward Scissorhands is a massive gothic mansion atop a hill filled with NMBC like design and stone figures. But within the gates are grand topiaries and flowers in full bloom. The idea that the main character is not "beautiful" and so surrounds himself with beauty.

The pairing of Danny Elfman and Tim Burton is magic. Elfman has worked with Burton previously on Beetlejuice and Batman and has continued to work with him. The music that Elfman composed for this film makes it believable. The viewer is moved emotionally with the aid of Elfman's talented yet dark score. The score compliments the actor and the plight of Scissorhands himself: stay and not belong or go and not belong.

This movie is not to be missed. A true romantic film and a eye opener of how people look at deformities and the fear of the unknown. Edward Scissorhands is a strong movie that still holds it own. A modern day fable you might say. A nice movie to finish out the eighties.

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