Archive for the ‘dark fantasy’ Category
Is there anything scarier than clowns? Of course not. And who knows scary better than Stephen King? You see where we’re going. It puts a malevolent clown (given demented life by a powdered, red-nosed Tim Curry) front and center, as King’s fat novel gets the TV-movie treatment. Even at three hours plus, the action is condensed, but an engaging Stand by Me vibe prevails for much of the running time. The seven main characters, as adolescents, conquered a force of pure evil in their Maine hometown. Now, the cackling Pennywise is back, and they must come home to fight him–or, should we say, It–again. Admitting the TV-movie trappings and sometimes hysterical performances, this is a genuinely gripping thriller. As so often with King, the basic idea (the bond formed during a childhood trauma) is clean and powerful, a lifeline anchored in reality that leads us to the supernatural. –Robert Horton
The films of Tim Burton shine through the muck like a jack-o-lantern on a foggy October night. After such successes as The Nightmare Before Christmas and Edward Scissorhands, it should come as no surprise that Sleepy Hollow is a dazzling film, a delicious reworking of Washington Irving’s The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. Dark and moody, the film is a thrilling ride back to the turn of the 19th century. Johnny Depp stars as Ichabod Crane, a seemingly hapless constable from New York City who is sent to the small town of Sleepy Hollow to solve the mystery of the decapitations that are plaguing the town. Crane is a bumbling sort, with a tremendous faith in science over mysticism, and he comes up against town secrets, bewitching women, and a number of bodies missing heads. Christina Ricci, as beautiful as ever, is Katrina Van Tassel, the offbeat love interest who alternately charms and frightens Crane.
The film, while occasionally gory (as one should expect from a movie about a headless horseman), is not terribly frightening, although it is suspenseful. Both Depp and Ricci are convincing, and the art direction and production values give the village its harsh feel. Toward the end, once the secrets are revealed, the film does slow down; however, this stylistic horror film provides many tricks and even more treats. –Jenny Brown