Friday, February 08, 2008

Sweeney Todd - no spoilers

I've been waiting and waiting for our local theatre to show Sweeney Todd. For a small town, they usually do a fantastic job of getting films in on or near their premiere date, but they really dropped the ball on this one - I had to wait over a month. They forgot to put it in the paper and it was showing on one of the smaller screens. And yes, I did have to wait. Because of the constant storms, it would have been stupid to drive 100 miles to the nearest big city to see it. By now it's old news to the rest of you, but I still want to mention it.

I love odd and dark, Tim Burton is a genius of a director, ditto Depp as an actor. I'm a big Broadway show and musical fan. So, what's not to like! And yet I was worried, would I like this movie? I knew the general plot line - would they be able to make these characters at all redeemable? Would I expect too much of the film? Would it disappoint? Even though I hadn't gone looking for them, I'd stumbled upon and read a number of reviews and opinions on the movie already, one of the major disadvantages of not seeing it as soon as it came out, and it ran the gamut from "BRILLIANT" to "DUD".

We went to see it Wednesday night. Hubby and I. We couldn't talk William into coming. For some reason he's developed what can only be described as an aversion to going to the movies with his parents. Sigh. So, hubby and I went and I wasn't so sure about going with him because, well, a couple of reasons. First of all, have you ever gone to the movies with my husband? No, of course you haven't. But it explains in part William's fear of being seen in public with us. Hubby screams out loud at movies. Like a girl. Yes he does. (and he's reading this and I know, I'm sorry for outing you honey but, it's true, you do.) So imagine going to a SCARY movie with him. Secondly, he and I don't usually see eye to eye on the types of movies we like. I wasn't at all sure he'd like it. But he's surprised me recently, liking several movies that I suggested and he originally turned his nose up at when I first suggested them. So off we went on a date. Dinner and a movie.

Did I like it? Yes, I did. I thought it was Six Thumbs Up!! You probably wouldn't have known that to have seen me in the movie theatre though. Every time Johnny picked up a blade, I had to scrunch down tight in my seat and pull my scarf up to the bottom of my eyes and hold it there, barely breathing. SO SCARY! I like monsters and hauntings and spooky and all manner of dark and gothic - but blood? Not so much.

It was an odd way to enjoy a movie - I was held spellbound through the movie, walked out of it slightly dazed, and found myself warming to it more and more as the hours ticked by since I'd actually seen it. It was very intense. But maybe it's just me, I haven't seen a lot of horror films, so maybe that got in the way for me.

Usually I'm the one that "gets" the movie and hubby spends the next week or so pumping me to explain the meaning and symbolism to him. This time I was still sort of feeling all weak at the knees and needing fresh air and we hadn't gotten two steps off the curb outside the theatre when he nailed it for me. "It's all about how revenge eventually destroys the person seeking it."

A couple of other comments -

I'm hard of hearing and sometimes I find myself lost, with big holes in the plot, if I miss even one critical piece of dialogue. I couldn't hear huge parts of the dialogue in this movie, in part because it was lots of singing, loud music, or whispering, and in part because the theatre had a lousy buzzing sound system for a big chunk of the showing. But despite all that it was one of the easiest plots I've been able to follow. I'm sure I'll pick up the rest of the dialogue and words to the songs when we watch it on DVD eventually, but it was a pleasant surprise that it didn't distract me from following the plot that I couldn't catch it all.

All the non-singers carried the singing parts well, I thought. The actors who could also sing were amazing.

The cinematography was AWESOME.

Joanna and Anthony were stunningly innocent and beautiful to look at - jewels thrown into the dark and smoke of London.

It distracted me the scenes where Judge Turpin and Beadle Bamford were together on the screen - I kept thinking "Hey, Professor Snapes and Peter Pettigrew!"

Turns out that hubby loved the movie, so we've been discussing it pretty much nonstop since Wednesday evening - the symbolism, the actors, the motivation of the characters, the Broadway show, the political comparisons, the history of wealth in London at the time of the Industrial Revolution, all the other movies we've seen all the actors in..... ad infinitum. Hubby doesn't like to leave a stone unturned when something grabs his attention.

Fortunately, or not, I haven't decided yet, he's moved on to being obsessed with finding a way to go to Paris this April. He keeps shoving lists of plane and hotel package deals in front of my face and asking me if I know where the airport is and if we should stay in the Latin Quarter. I'm not sure if I should jump at the opportunity or bring him back down to earth. I thought we weren't going to travel this year. Well, not travel more than a thousand miles in any given direction, that is. Is April a good time to go to Paris?


Anonymous Terri said...

Go...when a hubby wants to take you somewhere romantic, don't turn it down! What a gift!

9:48 PM  
Blogger Latharia said...

Oh, awesome movie. I don't even like scary movies, but having seen the play & loving Johnny Depp..and Alan Rickman, I couldn't turn it down!

3:29 PM  

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