SYNOPSIS: From creative genius Tim Burton (“Alice in Wonderland,” The Nightmare Before Christmas”) comes “Frankenweenie,” a heartwarming tale about a boy and his dog. After unexpectedly losing his beloved dog Sparky, young Victor harnesses the power of science to bring his best friend back to life—with just a few minor adjustments. He tries to hide his home-sewn creation, but when Sparky gets out, Victor’s fellow students, teachers and the entire town all learn that getting a new “leash on life” can be monstrous.
REVIEW: Tim Burton (Dark shadows, 2012) and Disney team-up for Frankenweenie, the 3D stop-motion animation remake of the director's early short film. After coming off of a disappointing Alice in Wonderland, one would think that Burton wore out his welcome in the animation arena by now, but with this release, it seems as though this is not the case. Frankenweenie is enchanting, stylish and loaded with child-friendly zest; perfect for the Halloween season. It is so nice how he has created such a visually stylized world with such radically designed characters, and how he's able to make them come alive on the big screen.
On the other hand, if you find this style of animation a bit jarring and have high hopes of Burton to reinventing his style, you're not going to get it with this latest release. As always he implements lots of his trademark ghoulish antics and if that Tim Burton type of look is getting on your last nerve, then Frankenweenie probably will not help your developing disdain. In addition, you might as well save yourself the extra dough you might be tempted to dish out for the 3D feature. Just see it in 2D because in the opening sequence there is a cute little gag concerning little Victor's homemade 3D monster movie, but anything past that little visually-interesting blip, I would suggest that the visual experience, is as basic as movie-going gets.
Overall this latest Tim Burton feature is an interesting flick, and I think it's appropriate for most ages with the exception for a few scenes that I found a bit daunting. One was the way in which Victor’s dog appeared in the scenes after being revived from the dead and the other was a scene with a horrid death by falling debris
More than anything, what Frankenweenie has on its side is appeal and sophistication. This is an extraordinary film, which is well developed and is a real pleasure to watch. There is a beautiful quality to seeing these puppets come to life on the big screen and my hat is off to Burton on this latest effort. The movie deserves three and a half (out of five) for creativity and visual effects.
By Movie-Man Stan
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