Tim Burton retells the story of Dark Shadows about a noble gentleman named Barnabas Collins cursed as a vampire by a jealous witch. After being imprisoned for 200 dreadful years, the hungry vampire breaks free returning to his ancestral home that lays in gloom inhabited by the dysfunctional Collins family. Attempting to adjust himself to the high times of the 70s, Barnabas devotes himself to protecting the recent generation of Collins from the vengeful witch played by Eva Green.
In this Burton film we see another side of the many personalities of Depp as he plays a vampire who entrances the ladies in the film and those watching it with his devilish charm. The cast brings about the imperfections of their characters bonding together this dysfunctional family the audience comes to loathe and love.
Michelle Pfeiffer plays Elizabeth Collins, a woman stressed with keeping the family business afloat from its vicious rivals. The infamous European actress Helena Bonham Carter plays the absurd drunk Dr. Julia Hoffman, the family doctor who provides her services through therapy sessions of crystal glasses and a bottle of whatever is closest to her. Former vampire of Let Me In’s Chloe Moretz plays Carolyn Stoddard, the sassy 70s teenager who’s facing a peculiar teen crisis. The movie also stars Johnny Miller as the greedy thief Roger Collins.
The film introduces the famous creatures of the underworld that includes a vampire struggling to control his thirst as a man and a vampire, a werewolf with a bite and in need of an attitude adjustment, a psycho jealous witch and many wandering ghosts. Burton’s visions of the creatures remain true to their myth but also bring their own creative style in the appearance, powers and personalities of the creatures.
The mood gets a little hot as Burton spices up the story with a few comedic rendezvous scenes leaving viewers with a perked brow of curiosity and confusion of what their eyes are witnessing. The fight scenes that revealed the true nature of the Collins family could have been better won over with the elements Burton had to play with, but this particular aspect is not one of his known strengths compared to his stunning vision for a film.
Leaving this movie was a tad satisfactory in what he delivered to his fans, Burton’s endless imagination has been better told through his own creative tales.