Sunday, May 13, 2012

Dark Shadows: Don't Bother

Dark Shadows is based on a 1960s supernatural soap opera of the same name. The film pulls a lot of soapy elements from the TV series, however the soap opera elements is the downfall of the film.

A soap opera TV series has the time to tell stories, build characters and set stakes of the story. The film has none of this. Bella Heathcote plays Victoria Winters, a mysterious woman who accepts a position to work as a governess to the Collins family. Johnny Depp is Barnabus Collins, a cursed vampire who has been unearthed after being trapped in a coffin for 200 years. In the intervening 200 years the once powerful and proud Collins family has fallen from grace, so Barnabus takes it upon himself to help them.

This is about as much I can say about plot of the film because not much time is spent on the other characters for me to even begin to care. Michelle Pfeiffer is the matriarch of the Collins family and she does nothing but have a stern face and try and explain away Barnabus' oddities. Chloe Grace Moretz as her daughter is no better, she has an unsightly scowl on her face in every scene.

Dark Shadows' crime is just that it is boring. I had seen the trailer before watching the film and I am pretty sure I had already seen every joke in the film from the trailer.

The best part of Dark Shadows is the music. The score is great and really fit the tone and time of the film.

Dark Shadows feels like it was Tim Burton and Johnny Depp just spending a few months having a good time and not caring if the actually made a good film. Other than the music this film is just a failure.

*1/2 Stars