Once, There Was Even a Man Who Had Scissors for Hands: Edward Scissorhands (1990)

So every year we review a Vincent Price film. Here we go!

Once, there was even a man who had scissors for hands

What?

Yes I said that right, Vincent Price.

Many of you may not know this, but this was Vincent Price’s last film. When I first saw this, I actually knew about Vincent Price than Johnny Depp.

In fact Vincent Price was supposed to have more screentime, but unfortunately was very ill at and they had to cut back on those scenes. Sad for us.

We didn’t get as much

This also fills another yearly notch, a Tim Burton film.

I have always loved Edward Scissorhands

So let’s not wait any longer. On with the review.

So the film starts off with a grandma, Kim Boggs (Winona Ryder) telling her granddaughter a story-of a man with scissors for hands.

Flashback years ago-Peg Boggs is the Avon lady, along with being kindest and sweetest woman ever. She tries to sell in her Suburban neighborhood but none are interested.

She’s finally reached the end of her rope-but then spots the creepy, spooky castle that exists at the end of the block. She decides to go in there and that is when everything changes.

Inside the worn and crumbling mansion-which she enters by herself! Very unsafe-and meets Edward.

Edward was created by the Inventor, but is unfinished-he still has scissors for hands.

Peg feels bad for him and takes him home with her-he meets her husband Bill (Alan Arkin), who is completely checked out and doesn’t see or hear anything, and son Kevin. Kevin is fascinated by Edward and wants to show him off.

That’s awesome

As many times as I have watched this I am just amazed with the character of Peg. She reminds me of the mom in My Boyfriend’s Back, but sweeter, kinder, and not nearly as psychotic. She is always encouraging and helping Edward.

Peg Boggs: Are you alone? Do you live up here all by yourself? What happened to your face? No, I won’t hurt you. But at the very least, let me give you a good astringent. And this will help to prevent infection. What’s your name?

Edward: Edward.

Peg Boggs: Edward… I think you should just come home with me.

And if anyone tries to say anything about him, she will go mama bear on them.

Audience Member #3: But if you had regular hands you’d be like everyone else.

Edward: Yes, I know.

Host-TV: I think he’d like that.

Audience Member #4: Then no one would think you’re special. You wouldn’t be on TV or anything.

Peg Boggs: No matter what, Edward will always be special.

So Pegg let’s Edward stay in her daughter’s room while she is camping with friends on her waterbed. Really Peg, he has scissors for hands!

Anyways, the neighbors are fascinated and want to take a look at him, forcing themselves on them with a BBQ.

Edward starts trying to get used to living with people. If you carefully watch Edward in the beginning he is moving his hands all over-but as he watches the others and as the movie progresses learns to better control his hands and be more humanlike.

And I do have to say I like the costume of Edward. I like Buster Keaton look carrying over from Benny & Joon and his Cure/Tim Burton-inspired hair. It wouldn’t always work, but it does on him.

So Edward is a hit, especially after he starts creating colorful topiaries.

Kim returns home from her trip in the mountains with her boyfriend Jim (Anthony Michael Hall). The first time I saw this-I didn’t recognize him. I don’t what he did but he went from major nerd in the ’80s to playing football jocks in the ’90s. I  always think if him as being one of the lucky three who were able to go from “nerd” to “heartthrob”-him, John Cusack, and Patrick Dempsey.

Kim returns home after “camping” and goes to her room-only to find Edward. Proof why scissors and waterbeds don’t work out.

From lawns Edward goes into animal haircuts.

And here he becomes an even bigger sensation. But not everyone loves him.

Poor Edward-hopefully in love with Kim and he really is. At this time Depp and Ryder starting dating and even got engaged-and you can just see in his eyes how much he cares for her. In fact, re-watching it this time I realize they spend hardly any screentime together, but can carry the romance in their looks, body language, tone, etc.

Here is where we get a slight look into Tim Burton. The eccentric, weird kid in love with the cheerleader but the jock keeping them apart? Hmm…

Anyways, Edward keeps trying. Kevin takes him to school for show-and-tell, he is always there to lend a blade, and then begins haircuts.

Edward Scissorhands in Wonderland

In fact the scene when he first cuts hair is a wink at Sweeney Todd, which Tim Burton and Johnny Depp would make years later.

The sweetest thing is when Edward is going to cut Peg’s hair-he makes it extra special and neat for her-his mom. Aw.

Very cute

With all this Edward goes on TV and the idea of opening his own business is brought up.

Neighbor Joyce is going to help and takes him to the area where they will be having the salon. She then strips and assaults him. Edward flees and Joyce is very upset.

I’m out!

Peg is going to help Edward and takes him to the bank-but here is where I realize I am an adult. I mean I know I am one, after all I’m six and twenty-but here is where I KNOW. My first response was how will he get a loan? He has no social security card, birth certificate, anything. Poor Edward is sad and they are unsure what to do next.

Now let me take a moment here and just go over Vincent Price’s role in the film. Throughout the movie we have flashbacks to when Edward was first created. The Inventor (Vincent Price) has an assembly line making cookies. As he enjoys them he gets the idea to make his son-Edward.

I love these scenes as they are so endearing and said. What would have been if the creator lived. I love Vincent Price’s voice as well. I could just listen to him speak for hours.

One day Kim forgets her key and they are locked out of the house. Edward opens the door by picking the lock and Jim gets the idea to use Edward to rob his house. You see JIm is a Neanderthal that instead of getting a job to get his own car wants his dad to do it. And if dad refuses-well then the only way is to rob his house. What a baby-WAH BOO HOO I can’t get my way let’s make dad pay for it.

They lie to Edward that a guy stole Jim’s stuff and want to get it back. Kim feels bad and wants to stop, but they don’t listen to her. Instead-they go but when the alarm goes off abandon him.

Kim is angry wanting to go back, but they don’t listen to her and she doesn’t do anything. Now I like Kim, but she never tells the truth. It makes me so angry-all this awful things keep happening to Edward afterwards and they could have stopped it if she had just told the truth.

Very disappointed in you Kim.

So Edward is taken to jail and held until Peg and Bill can pick him up. After that he is a pariah. No one wants to be around him, have him cut their lawn, dog, or hair.

Kim gets angry with Jim, but he just taunts her with how she hasn’t said anything. Edward sees this and becomes even more angry as he did it for Kim and she is still with the jerk.

He gets depressed and ruins his creations-he also gets angsty and messes up the walls.

Peg is awesome-she continues to be there for Edward. She has him keep giving her haircuts to make him feel better. Se sweet.

So cute

All comes to a head on Christmas. Edward and Kim have grown closer. He works on an ice sculpture and accidentally nicks Kim. Jim comes and chases Edward off who goes on a rage destroying shrubbery.

Kim is done with Jim and he storms off drinking with his friend.

Kim’s hand is taken care of by her mom and it wasn’t a serious wound just a small one. They worry about Edward and go off to find him leaving Kim to wait in case he comes back or the neighbors come for the party.

Edward returns and they have a good moment, broken when a drunken Jim comes racing down the street and almost hits Kevin. Edward runs and pushes Kevin out of the way before he gets killed. But by doing so nicks Kevin, especially as Kevin doesn’t know what is going on.

Jim comes and tries to attack Edward, who nicks him too. Edward then storms off-followed by Kim. Meanwhile like in every monster movie the neighborhood storms together creating a mob to converge on Edward.

mob

Grab your torches and sharpen your pitchforks!

In the mansion Kim approaches Edward, ecstatic that he is alive, but just like in Beauty and the Beast, Jim the jerk followed them and tries to kill Edward. He was going to shoot him-but Kim intercedes. Edward had not planned on doing anything-but when Jim slaps Kim he becomes angry and stabs Jim-throwing him out the window.

Kim and Edward see the dead body and know the mob won’t stop until Edward is dead. Kim kisses Edward and says good-bye.

Noooo!

Downstairs, the people are calling for Edward’s blood. Kim notices a machine and grabs a scissorhand-using it as proof that Edward is dead. She tells them it is all over.

This scene definitely has a Nightmare on Elm Street feel to it with the scissors-which Johnny Depp is also in.

That ends it and all goes back to how it should be-except the Boggs family. Years pass and they all move on-but Kim always remembers Edward.

And Edward never forgets her. His garden growing and he’s making an ice sculpture of Kim to grace his garden.

Such a great story with a gentle sweet character. I love this film and could just continue to watch it over and over again.

And this little extra for you guys!

To start Horrorfest VII from the beginning, go to It’s the End of the World: The Birds (1963)

For the previous post, go to Do You Ever Feel Like Your Life Has Turned into Something You Never Intended?: Nocturnal Animals (2016)

For more Edward Scissorhands, go to I Did It for You: Edward Scissorhands (1990)

For more Tim Burton, go to He’s Married to a Corpse. He Has A Corpse Bride!: Corpse Bride (2005)

For more Vincent Price, go to They’re Coming for Me Now…And Then They’ll Come for You: House on Haunted Hill (1959)

For more Johnny Depp, go to It was a Horseman, a Dead One. Headless: Sleepy Hollow (1999)

For more Winona Ryder, go to 25 Films of Christmas

For more Anthony Michael Hall, go to Don’t You Forget About Me

For more teen monster films, go to I Died for You! I Came Back from the Dead for You! I Love You!: My Boyfriend’s Back (1993)

I Died for You! I Came Back from the Dead for You! I Love You!: My Boyfriend’s Back (1993)

I died for you! I came back from the dead for you! I love you!

So last year we had Teen Wolf

And Teen Vampire:

While I did cover Michael Jackson’s Thriller, it would have been nice to have a full-length teen zombie film.

Oh, well

But now I do with My Boyfriend’s Back:

I stumbled upon this on Amazon Instant Watch, recommended as I had loved Once Bitten. Well…I think Amazon needs to rethink that recommendation. The films had some similarities, both are teen horror-comedies, but this movie is one of the weirdest I have ever seen. And know I get to share that strangeness with you all.

Johnny (Andrew Lowery) is a nerd who has been in love with Missy McCloud (Traci Lind) since first grade. He tried to give her a dream gift and tell how he felt, but choked on the words, and has been doing so ever since.

When Missy and her boyfriend Buck break up, Johnny sees his in, but before he can ask her out, Buck comes back.

Buck’s minion (played by Phillip Seymour Hoffman) Chuck Bronski is weird guy who has murderous tendencies. He makes sure no one comes around his buddy’s girl and is extremely weird and creepy.

Why is he even allowed in school?

But Johnny won’t give up on his dream and comes up with what he thinks is the best plan ever. He will have his friend pretend to rob the store Missy works at, Johnny will save her, and Missy will fall in love with her.

Why would you do that?

Johnny tries to do his idea, but he ends up being interrupted by a real robber. When the robber is about to shoot Missy, Johnny jumps into the way, saving her, and with his dying words asks Missy to go to prom with him. She agrees.

I got the yes!

But Johnny dies and is buried.

Not really as this is a zombie film.

from Warm Bodies

Yes, Johnny rises from the dead as he has a date with his dream girl and intends to keep it.

The gravedigger tries to warn him that he can’t go back to the and of the living, but Johnny ignores him.

Bad things happen when you don’t listen

He goes home to the shock of his parents, although they quickly get over it as they are pleased to have their son back. He then goes to school and tries to make plans with Missy, but she is in shock. She only agreed to go to prom with Johnny because she felt bad for him, and to be honest, because he was dying.

She didn’t expect him to be a zombie and come back for her. Well Johnny is back and he’s not taking no as an answer. He is more determined than ever to get his prom date.

Buck and Chuck don’t like Johnny as a zombie any more than they did when he was a person. They are continue to bully him

from Back to the Future

And their behavior makes Missy decide to go out with Johnny. In fact she states to really enjoy his company, and become really into him. And I mean into him. As she wants to be with him even though she knows he is DEAD!

Johnny finally has what he always dreamed of getting…that is until Johnny’s ear falls off when he and Missy are making out.

He runs to the doctor, but they can’t do anything to fix him, he’s dead! The doctor promises to try and find a cure, and sends Johnny over to Maggie, the only person who can deal with zombies as her husband was one. She tells him that the only solution to keep him together is to eat human flesh. Something Johnny desperately does not want to do.

At school, he and Missy talk but then Buck and Chuck come into play, and Chuck chases after him trying to kill him WITH AN AXE. I don’t care that Johnny is a zombie, Chuck would probably have done this to Johnny sooner or later if he remained human. Chuck is that insane.

And in some weird twist, Chuck kills himself, and a hungry Johnny eats him.

Johnny is good for a while, but now everyone is after him as he ate Chuck. They come to his house after but are chased out by his mom. Now this is the only thing I liked in this film. His mom.

YES!!!! His mom.

So at first you think Johnny’s mom is just a cliché housewife. She always has food ready, wears her little pearls, and is just perky and cleaning and everything. But she adjusts from having her son be a zombie in no time at all, trying to help him in any way she can. (In fact she is so down with the whole thing she tries to bring him people to eat. That’s crazy!) The best scene is when an angry mob is trying to take her son and this prim little woman in pearls pulls out a shotgun, yes A SHOTGUN, ready to defend her son.

Johnny tries to fix things with Missy, giving her the locket he picked out and saved all those years ago. He wins her heart, but she’s the only non-relative who likes him. Everyone else wants him dead. Well to stay dead.

mob

Grab your torches and sharpen your pitchforks!

The doctor figures out how to help him, but his nurse convinces him not to waste the serum on Johnny, but use Johnny to make a giant batch of serum and sell it for millions.

So we have everyone in town after Johnny, him being captured by the doctor, while the rest of the storms the area looking for him. Missy and his friend find him, rescuing him as Johnny runs back to the graveyard. They end up in a shootout with his parents, and he manages to convince everyone to leave him alone, as all he wants is to be with Missy for prom.

He goes to prom, but then dies again

Johnny is sent to heaven, and then back as his death was a mistake. He goes to the prom with Missy (as saving her life was a good plan) and gets the girl.

Meh.

Yeah, I did not like this movie.

It was really horrible, it was awful, it was a waste of time.

The jokes were not funny and not on point

There is no explanation for why this was happening to Johnny until the very end.

You got to play me like that?

And most of the plot was borrow from all kinds of films that came before it. Once Bitten, Heaven Can Wait, Teen Wolf, Little Shop of Horrors, Frankenstein, etc. It wasn’t interesting, or avant-garde- just recycled plots.

Andrew Lowery was so unemotional-even before he was a zombie. He was like a monotone John Malkovich.

Ugh.

As I have said before the psychotic and weird redneck Chuck, who no in this universe finds weird or creepy (except Johnny). I mean this guy is not normal! He is a psycho! Why does everyone act like it is okay?

Then there are these weird “dream sequences” the main character has like every five minutes in the film. Okay so it isn’t every five minutes, but it does happen so much that I spent 90% of this film confused as to what was really happening and what was just in Johnny’s mind.

Help me! I’m confused!

And Missy (Traci Lind) is a horrible actress. I can never tell if she is serious, joking, or  what Johnny sees in his dreams. A lot of this film I just felt like what is going on?!

Halfway through I just gave up trying to get it.

The only thing worthwhile was Johnny’s mom:

I mean she is the scariest thing in this film. A sweet, adorable, intense woman who goes from talking about the four food groups to kidnapping children.

It wasn’t funny and the acting was horrible. My suggestion? Pass this one by.

And I know I do a banner thing every year for Facebook, part of my countdown to Halloween, but I couldn’t find a picture large enough. So no banner thing for this film.

Oh, well

To start Horrorfest VI from the beginning, go to One of Our Guests is a Werewolf, I Know It.: The Beast Must Die (1974)

For more zombie films, go to No Mere Mortal Can Resist the Evil of the Thriller: Thriller (1983)

For more Teen Horror films, go to I’m…a Werewolf: Teen Wolf (1985)

For more Teen Horror Prom films, go to I’m the Chosen One. And I Choose to be Shopping: Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992)

For more Horror-Comedies, go to That’s What We’re Trying to Find out! We’re Trying to Find Out Who Killed Him, and Where, and With What!: Clue (1985)