Picture Courtesy of Walt Disney Pictures

Picture Courtesy of Walt Disney Pictures


I am a huge Disney fan, as well as a Tim Burton fan.  Nothing is more amazing than Disney…Tim Burton…and Danny Elfman all together in one film.  It is basically set up for success just with these three elements.  I had missed seeing Frankenweenie in theatres, which was sad, but no point in dwelling, I was able to see it now.

An interesting tid bit of information that I found out about Frankenweenie, which I’m sure many of you also were not aware of, was that this film was based off a live action Tim Burton movie from the 80’s.  The film follows the same story line, but focuses on Victor and Sparky instead of the new versions added elements.  Burton was fired from Disney after the film was completed.  It was viewed to be too scary for young children, and the project was not aired in the states.  It was not until 1994 that the film was released to home video. 

Promotional poster

Picture Courtesy of Buena Vista Distribution

Frankenweenie plays off the famous story of Frankenstein.  The main character, Victor, has a dog named Sparky who is his best friend (or his only friend to be precise.)  Sparky is hit by a car one day and killed.  After seeing a science experiment at school, Victor decides to try to bring Sparky back to life.  The film pulls many Frankenstein elements into it including the Windmill.  It even gives the town a Holland theme to help explain the existence of this Windmill.  The town is called New Holland.  Sparky, our Frankenstein, comes complete with metal bolts in his neck.  The neighbour’s dog is a Black Poodle who has a large black tower of hair and eventually comes complete with two white streaks.  There are many famous voices for the characters, which is always fun trying to guess them.  No stranger to Tim Burton films, Winona Ryder even adds her whistle tones to one of the characters. 

The film is made with stop motion technology which Tim Burton does best.  Many of the characters have Burtons unique style which I love, which many see as being creepy or scary.  The added characters bring the majority of the comedy to the film, but for me they also impact the film negatively.  I love the characters, but I believe more of them should have been kept to the sidelines.  The story should have focused more on that of Victor and Sparky, but because there was only so much to go on, and I believe they feared people would be bored.  They introduced more storylines to the added characters, a few of them I could have handled, but 5?  I think all together it was a bit much and this soured the film for me.

I hate to say that but it is true.  I loved the concept, I loved the visuals, I loved so many things about this film.  Unfortunately it does not compare to the good old days of the Nightmare Before Christmas, but all films have lost their musical edge.  No matter how hard they try, they are not as catchy and you will not see those on my iPod with the classics.  Frankenweenie is not a musical, just to set that straight.  It was a fun view, but I was slightly disappointed.  If you’re a Burton fan it is worth the watch but overall the film was just okay to good for me. </3



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