Calista’s Cinema Conversations: Tim Burton films

Tim Burton, a director of various odd masterpieces, has won the title of a great director due to his cinematic visions that have inspired so many. With his directorial repertoire full of original films, sequels and collaborations, there is bound to be a few unsatisfactory ones in the mix.

Burton’s quirky originals are usually received well, such as the dark comedy “Beetlejuice” about  couple who die and call upon a troublemaking spirit to try to get rid of the new family that moves in to their old home. Another classic is “Big Fish” about a man who goes on a journey to find out if the crazy stories his father told him before he died were real. My personal favorite is “Edward Scissorhands” about an artificial man who is left abandoned after the man who created him died, leaving him with only scissors for hands. He is soon found by a kind family who gives him shelter, and he catches the eye the neighborhood.

Burton’s satirical comedy “Mars Attacks!” is a film that is not my personal favorite. It’s a film about what could happen if hostile aliens came down to space and exceeded humans in intelligence. Unfortunately the plot and script are only funny at times and it’s not worth watching.

Some things Burton is famous for are his sequels and spin offs of popular stories, such as the live action “Alice in Wonderland” that took a very unique spin on the classic children’s story. Or his take on the Broadway musical “Sweeney Todd” about a murderous barber who gets revenge for being taken away from his family. He also directed the more recent film “Ms. Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children,” which is based off of the popular novel about a young boy who helps a house of gifted children to save themselves from the evil that threatens to take their lives.

Some of Burton’s sequels and remakes aren’t as noteworthy. His “Planet of the Apes” remake of the 1960s classic was not impressive, and although it gave audiences the famous Mark Wahlberg, he seemed to be the only thing holding that movie together at all. The same for the actors of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” cannot be said. Burton’s go to actor, Johnny Depp, made the movie hard to watch with his over-the-top character acting. If you want to watch either of these films, I’d suggest watching the originals and skipping over Tim Burton’s version. The sequel to “Alice in Wonderland,” “Alice Through the Looking Glass,” was an attempt at capturing the magic of the first, but instead fell flat with the formulaic plot line and predictable characters.

Animated or Claymated movies directed by Tim Burton are usually his most well-known. “The Corpse Bride,” “Frankenweenie” and “9” have all been very well-received by audiences, including some people who do not enjoy non-live-action films. Even the film Burton co-wrote, “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” is one of his most famous films.

Overall, most of Tim Burton’s movies are works of cinematic art that are unparalleled to any other kind of movie seen before.


Calista Giroux is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at calista.giroux@uconn.edu.