I had no interest in this film. The trailers were boring, rubbish and badly cut. Then the director said some racist things and I cared a bit less. I mean I’m not completely closed to the idea of watching something from somebody who’s done something problematic. I just wasn’t that fussed about this, particularly with the average reviews and then his comments just made it worse.
The thing is I had some unexpected free time recently so I went to see it with my Unlimited card.
It wasn’t bad.
What was bad was the marketing. They didn’t represent the film successfully at all, making it feel like a crowd-pleasing modern blockbuster with none of the edge of what a Burton film should be.
The way they cut two scenes together to make it feel like they came from the same bit was annoying. The BIG SCREECHING MUSIC WHEN SOMETHING IS HAPPENING was aggravating. You know what I mean. When the boat comes up. It’s just cut badly.
However, the film is actually decent. Not amazing or original, just pretty decent. I wouldn’t say no to watching it again and I didn’t want to yell at the screen whilst I was sitting there.
Yes, It was very similar to an awful lot of things and it had very clunky and expository dialogue. But I enjoyed some of the stylistic choices. The beginning set in Florida was nicely different to previous Burton movies and the locations, particularly Wales were beautiful.
The score was also quite nice and the cinematography surprisingly not as murky and bland as something like Alice in Wonderland. And the villains, tall Slenderman type creatures, were sufficiently scary and Samuel L Jackson was effectively creepy.
The cast was fine, never really doing anything to stretch their skills and the story was extremely generic and the A-B plotting obvious. But I enjoyed the pacing and how nothing of the committee approved trailer was really evident in the final product.
In the end, it looked good, sounded good and though it’s not a return to form for a director who may need to change up his outdated views if he wants to make great films again, I liked it enough.
Not the best of the year but not the worst either.