The Corpse Bride (2005)
Reviewed on 2012 April 24
Nice Tim Burton yarn about a timid groom-to-be who thinks his worst problems are going to be memorizing his vows and placating his dour in-laws. Boy, does he wish.
The Van Dort clan wants to be in high society, and fob off their timid son Victor (voiced by Burton regular Johnny Depp) to a sweet young rich thing at the same time. The Everglots, facing financial ruin, are happy to farm out their daughter Victoria (Emily Watson) to wealthy, skittish Victor, except the poor kid is so tightly wrapped he can’t seem to nail the overly prescribed wedding vows. Rather than have a melt-down in front of all these tightly wrapped people in the church, Victor slips into the woods to practice his vows in peace, thinking nobody will hear him. No living soul does…
This was a lot darker (and yet funnier) in its own way than The Nightmare Before Christmas, and I liked it better. The plot was like something from a Grimm’s fairy tale, and Burton brought it to life in his uniquely warped way, with amazing stop-motion. We have the usual Burton stable of talent, including Danny Elfman wearing two hats as a music composer and the voice of Bojangles the skeleton. Christopher Lee has a great bit as the irritable pastor. I can’t think of another film-maker that can pull off being this dark and this sweet at the same time.
Three chocolate morsels.