By AMANDA THOMAS
We have all seen this movie before. It is called “The
Nightmare Before Christmas.” Tim Burton’s “Corpse
Bride” sparks the dark side of the imagination but the plot fails to deliver.
It’s a haunting tale of an awkward and shy groom, Victor
Van Dort (Johnny Depp), who
has been prearranged to marry the timid yet determined Victoria Everglot (Emily Watson).
Nell and William Van Dort (Tracey Ullman
and Paul Whitehouse) are wealthy fish merchants and from the marriage will save
Maudeline and Finnis Everglot (Joanna Lumley and Albert Finny) from becoming
On the night of
the rehearsal, Victor is unable to recite his vows and somehow manages to set
his future mother-in-law’s dress on fire.
He flees to the woods to clear his head and practice his
vows when the infamous Corpse Bride of the underworld (Helena Bonham Carter)
assumes they are being spoken to her and claims Victor has her husband.
Victor must now find a way to return to his flesh and
blood true love, Victoria, in the land of the living.
Of course, no one can hold a candle to the musical genius
of Danny Elfman and the creative film-making duo he
and Burton make.
The stop motion animation captivates each character’s
personality artistically and accurately from the tip of their nose down to the
way they waddle.
Burton pays grave attention to detail for even the
nameplate on the piano says Harryhausen, a tribute to
the late Ray Harryhausen, a legendary stop motion
Surprisingly, the underworld of the dead is full of more
life, color and laughter than the land of the living above.
The same liveliness exists in the talents of the actors
and creators, but the story is lacking in depth and interest. Overall, it’s just