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TOA. Turd On Arrival
October 25th, 2012 [8:41:16]
 3/10

cress: A huge misfire by Tim Burton. I can see why he was drawn to this; it's essentially a Beetlejuice-esque story. A family in a large house, a girl who talks to ghosts, a cursed dead guy who "helps" the family with a task. But the "fish out of water" aspect, with Barnabas resurrected in the '70s, falls on its face. The attempts for humor with this concept are never fully realized. Yes, Depp does get a chuckle here and there with his dialogue. But not much. If someone else in the cast was used to get laughs, it would have greatly helped the film out. Jackie Earle Haley's character would have been perfect, but he is wasted. Instead, Burton relys on Depp for humor, and it never pays off.
Pfeiffer is also wasted, but nice to see again. Chloe Moretz is always good, but rather one-note here. Jonny Lee Miller is good for the limited screen-time he has. The best performance comes from Eva Green. She is actually THE BEST THING ABOUT THE FILM. God I love her.
The script never capitalizes on the potential humor inherent in bringing Barnabas into the decade of bell-bottoms and good music(though its played throughout). Lackluster "horror" cliches are peppered into the film, with very little flair or innovation. The final act seems rushed, and the ending with Helena Bonham-Carter(also good) is laughingly bad. A terrible script that is directed and acted well, but one that should have never been put into production.


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