September 23, 2012

Dark Shadows (2012)

"An imprisoned vampire, Barnabas Collins, is set free and returns to his ancestral home, where his dysfunctional descendants are in need of his protection."

There are some films which you have to be bored out of your mind to watch, and, unfortunately, I was that bored enough today to see if I could find anything enjoyable in Tim Burton's version of "Dark Shadows".

I'm glad that I have no sense of humour because "Dark Shadows" failed completely as a comedy. It also failed to be anything other than an all-star cast playing dress-up. If the intention was simply to destroy any nostalgic admiration anyone could have for the original Dan Curtis series with a load of silliness and superficiality, it certainly succeeded there.

I've only ever seen a few episodes of the TV series and one of the films (I forget which one), but they were a lot more entertaining than this hack job. Although Johnny Depp was slightly comical, Eva Green was sexy as Hell, and I now know what happened to Jonny Lee Miller, it was just a lot of high production values layered over a weak script.

Having watched a lot of these over-produced and under-written movies this week, I'm beginning to wonder if this is the thing now. Nobody seems to care about providing any kind of engrossing or cohesive story as long as they can stick a few big name actors in costumes up on screen and grab some quick cash from the kids who don't know any better.

Even if I was the right age to be part of the targeted PG-13 audience, I'm sure I would still have been disappointed with "Dark Shadows". It started off too fast, then wasted a lot of time on unnecessary details and characters who didn't really do anything, while, at the same time, it badly mixed fish-out-of-water, "Austin Powers"-style humour with a feeble attempt at a Gothic love story.

After sitting through nearly two hours of this dreck, I really don't want to waste any more time talking about it. "Dark Shadows" looked extremely good, the 1970's music was better, the couple of surprise cameos were okay, but it was a whole load of nothing really.

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