Tim Burton is a wonderful master of the creepy, spooky, and down right weird. Anything he does is beautiful in such a wondrously haunting way that he has inspired millions around the globe. As I was too sacred to watch Nightmare Before Christmas as a child, Corpse Bride was my induction to the Claymation world as an adult. The cast, as is typical with Tim Burton now-a-days, the two lead roles are portrayed by Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter.
The story is very simple, and the ending is expected. One thing I typically enjoy with Burton are underlying themes, and I think quite a few and be picked out of this tale. There is the obvious, don’t trust people who only look good. And set in stark dour Victorian Europe, there is a good contrast to be delved into between the Land of the Living and the Land of the Dead.
I didn’t always, however, enjoy the story. Earlier I mentioned its simplicity with only four major characters to interact with and a storyline that is easily identifiable. There are portions of the storyline where antagonists and protagonists switch spots, and certain scenes where they are both in a minute. This is something that, I’ll say, tizzied me: in movies I see as simplistic, I desperately want my emotional investment to be easy. Main character is the protagonist, good guy, the end. Burton doesn’t do that, and in that way is able to express the complexity of humanity in a children’s film. Everyone has their own ends, and you may not like them at all times: humans are frustrating, maddening, idiots sometimes with no heart for what others may feel.
I think we’ve all been privy to this in ourselves and others. It’s a universal that needs to be expressed more in modern fairy tale retellings. Looking back on these last couple of cinematic generations, I think Burton is a classic that will last through time.
Would recommend, and could be watched with a good sturdy child that won’t be unsettled by bones. Family friendly in most respects. I highly recommend it, even though I don’t consider it one of Tim Burton’s best works.