He’s Married to a Corpse. He Has A Corpse Bride!: Corpse Bride (2005)

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He’s married to a corpse. He has a corpse bride. There must be some way to undo what’s been done.

Every year I do an animated movie as part of my Horrorfest review. As I was trying to decide which one, I finally settled on The Corpse Bride as I thought it was high time I reviewed a Tim Burton film. I have been trying to do Edward Scissorhands or Sleepy Hollow (1999), for years now but it just seems as if 31 days is never enough time to do everything I wish.

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So I have never seen this whole film from beginning to end. Starting with ABC Family’s 13 Nights of Halloween, and just seeming to continue on, I always only catch the end of this film. So here we go!

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I didn’t like this movie.

Something is not right!

To me it seemed like Tim Burton was trying to recapture The Nightmare Before Christmas with the style and characters, but the story just wasn’t that good.

See ya!

Why didn’t I like it? Well let’s get started.

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So the story begins with Victor Van Groot (Johnny Depp), nouveau rich, as he prepares to marry Victoria Everglot, from an old important family (who unfortunately has no money). There marriage is supposed to be one of convenience, but Victoria and Victor have fallen for each other.

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However, even though Victor is in love with Victoria, he is extremely nervous about the wedding and messing things up. He ruins the rehearsal when he drops the ring, (symbolizing his death) and accidentally catches Mrs. Everglot’s dress on fire.

ouch Hermione

He runs away embarrassed and tries to work on his vows. He manages to knock them out of the park, but when he gets to placing the ring on the finger (a stick off a tree) it turns out that he has awaken the dead, a zombie bride.

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He then gets dragged down…I don’t know actually know where. Is it is heaven, hell, purgatory, or final resting place for the townspeople? They never explain.

It works

Is it for everyone or just the village? And how was she even able to drag Victor down if he isn’t dead?

Anyways, they give him the story behind the Corpse Bride, Emily. She was engaged to marry a man her parents disapproved of. She stole all their money and jewels as the two planned to elope. But when Emily arrived, her betrothed strangled her and took off with everything. She then decided she would wait there until her true love awoke her.

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Victor wants to leave, but Emily doesn’t want him too. He convinces her to let him return to the world above so that they can see his parents. They go, but instead of seeing his parents, he tries to tell Victoria what has happened.

Emily follows him, and upset at his betrayal, drags him back down to the underworld.

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Victoria is worried and tries to seek help, but everyone thinks she is crazy. Her parents are desperate for money, so when Lord Barkis, (who has just arrived in town and no one knows him but he gives the appearance of being wealthy and from a distinguished family) offers to marry Victoria, her parents accept. Victoria on the other hand is completely distraught.

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Meanwhile, below the ground, Victor’s coachman has just arrived and given him the news about Victoria. Heartbroken that she would marry another, Victor agrees to spend eternity with Emily. In order to make the ceremony lawful, they must return topside, preform the wedding ceremony, and Victor must take poison so that he can join Emily in the afterlife.

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They come in right after Victoria and Lord Barkis have performed the ceremony. Everyone is terrified including the townspeople.

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However, after they discover that the skeleton/zombie creations are their dead relatives, they are happy to have their loved ones back.

Double double yay

Lord Barkin wants to flee and tells Victoria to get all her family’s money so they can take off. Victoria reveals they have no money, now they both are unhappy.

I am not happy

I am not happy

Victor and Emily are getting ready to perform the ceremony when Victoria arrives at the church. Emily sees how much Victor loves Victoria and stops the ceremony. Victor and Victoria are together, but unfortunately they can’t really be together as she is already married, something Lord Barkin reminds everyone. But as he comes to take Victoria away, it is revealed that he was the one who killed Emily.

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All the other skeletons and zombies are furious, but there is nothing that can be done by the dead as he is still alive. Lord Barkin laughs at this and takes a drink of the wine set out for the wedding ceremony, making fun of Emily. But the wine he drank was the poisoned wine that was set out for Victor.

Get him!

Get him!

As he is now dead, Emily can get justice; Victoria and Victor get their happy ending; and Emily is released and able to pass on.

Good-bye!

Good-bye!

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So let’s start with what I did like:

1) The Animation

In a world that was moving from 2D animation to CGI, it is nice to see a throwback like this, I actually wish we had more films like it. I know it was becoming too expensive for a lot of studios to do it and will eventually become totally outmoded, but I like it. There is something so real about these puppets.

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2) The Ending

The ending was so cute, it was why I even wanted to watch the film. I mean loved how Victor and Victoria get together and Emily has peace.

I love it

Although, why does she turn into butterflies?

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Now why I Didn’t like:

1) Too Nightmare Before Christmas

nightmare before christmas nothing turn out like it should

I really felt like Burton was just trying to recapture The Nightmare Before Christmas. He just borrowed too much from his earlier film that this piece felt like a poor companion. I mean the creatures had the same style; Emily looked like a Blue Sally; there are two skeleton kids and a dwarf replacing the three trick or treaters; a bone dog instead of ghost dog; and tons of song. Instead of being cute it just seems boring, as if Burton has no new ideas.

Something is not right!

2) Too Many Songs

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Now I love music

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But the songs in a film need to be good and have something to do with advancing or enhancing the plot. These songs were not like that, they were horrible. I mean have the time the people aren’t even really singing but talking their lyrics. It really felt like they were trying to reach a quota of songs instead of adding to the film. I mean this was so bad it was like Frozen.  What are you doing Burton?

Bad. Very bad.

Bad. Very bad.

3) This Was too Short

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Everything felt as if it was moving too quickly. It was like boom, boom, boom, done. It made me feel as if they couldn’t really think of a plot so they just jammed a bunch of songs in and hurried to the ending.

4) The Older Generation is Wrong Theme

Burton has been doing this for a looooooong time and it is getting really boring.

Bones David Bored I;m bored boring

In everything lately, it seems as if Burton is trying to say the older generation is silly, spurious, stupid, cruel, etc. We got it, you don’t like the older generation, move on!

And the weird thing is, Burton is technically the “old generation”, so does he not like himself?

It works

It works

5) Music is Not Right for a Young Lady

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Uh, did he do any research? Victoria wants to play the piano, but isn’t allowed as “music is not right for a girl”. Uh, no. Music has always been something young ladies were trained in. Think of the three acceptable arts: piano, painting, and embroidery. I mean remember Mr. Darcy?

“a thorough knowledge of music, singing, drawing, dancing, and the modern languages, to deserve the word; and besides all this, she must possess a certain something in her air and manner of walking, the tone of her voice, her address and expressions, or the word will be but half deserved.’ Caroline Bingley…’All this she must possess,’ added Darcy, ‘and to all this she must yet add something more substantial, in the improvement of her mind by extensive reading.”

6) No Character Development 

Nope, not him.

So Victoria and Victor are cute, but we hardly know anything about them! I mean we know Victoria doesn’t want to wear corsets, or follow society’s rules, but what does she like? What does she want? Who is she? Victor is insecure and frightened, but that’s it. There is nothing else to him.

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7) Why Would They Marry Their Daughter Off to Someone They Don’t Know

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Now don’t tell me “it is because they need money”. Why would a family that was so concerned over their daughter marrying a rich fish merchant’s son, even though they are filthy rich, just send her off with a guy they know nothing about? That is dumb and makes no sense. Why wouldn’t they have looked into his background and discovered he has no money either?

So obs

8) They Couldn’t Just End an Engagement

So as stated before I guess Burton did zero research as you can’t just switch one engagement for another. Since Victor never actually ended his engagement there could be legal steps taken against the Everglots, and a family that has no money would be careful about that.

9) More Research Issues

So again another problem with the time period they set this film in. The Everglots are angry at  Victor and Victoria alone in the room but that wouldn’t be as big an issue, as when a couple was engaged there were a few relaxed rules. I mean Victor couldn’t be in her bedroom, but he could be in the room alone with her for a bit. I mean seriously, Did you do ANY research?

really? I can't stand this movie.

Ultimately, I thought it wasn’t that good until the end and really not worth watching.

See ya!

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And bringing back the facebook covers/mini posters. I haven’t been able to do them for the last few posts as I couldn’t find pics I liked that had a horror-ish feel. But I did make one for The Corpse Bride.

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To start Horrorfest V from the beginning, go to Who You Gonna Call?: Ghostbusters (1984)

For the previous post, go to It’s A Hard World: Backfire (1950)

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For more zombies, go to Say Something Human: Warm Bodies (2013)

For more animated films, go to A Giant Metal Man: The Iron Giant (1995)

For more claymation films, go to A Matter of Loaf and Death: Wallace and Gromit (2008)

For more on Johnny Depp, go to Lookin’ Over a Four-Leaf Clover: 17 More Irish Heroes

For more on Helena Bonham Carter, go to I Don’t Want to Own You, I Just Want to Be With You: A Room With a View (1985)

For more historical fiction, go to Because I Am Mad, I Hate You. Because I Am Mad, I Have Betrayed You: Gaslight (1944)

Touch a Button. Things Happen. A Scientist Becomes a Beast: The Beast of Yucca Flats (1961)

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Touch a button. Things happen. A scientist becomes a beast

THIS IS ONE OF THE WORST MOVIES I HAVE EVER, EVER, EVER, EVER SEEN! It was BEYOND AWFUL! I mean it was  Attack of the Killer Tomatoes or Mean Girls 2 bad. My sister bought a box set of the Greatest 100 Horror Classics, and the two of us has been working through them. Most of them were really good, I mean Carnival of Souls, Phantom of the Opera (1925), etc were on there; but this one was really a major dud.

The first scene has nothing to do with the rest of the movie. A women takes a shower and is strangled. We never see the murderer, we never mention the murderer, in fact nothing at all comes from this.

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I know like what the heck movie makers? Why would you do that do your viewers? A  later interview done with the producer revealed that the scene was added because the director liked nude scenes. Seriously? Why would you add something like that in when it has nothing to do with the plot. It’d be like having half-naked women singing about Hitler.

In Yucca Flats a Soviet scientist, Joseph Javorsky, is defecting. As he is running he and his American contacts are attacked by KGB. Javorsky gets away but wanders in an American nuclear test and is transformed into a mindless beast.

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I know, its awful. It’s like Really? Really? That’s what you’re going with?

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We get a lot of this in the film.

We get a lot of this in the film.

He then kills a couple in their car. Two police officers who seem to have no clue what being a police officer means go after him. (The head cop looks like he’s sixteen while the deputy 45, how that worked out I don’t know.)

A vacationing family ends up getting caught up in this. (This is where the story got interesting as we made up this whole back story about how both kids were the moms but the youngest was from her now husband  and that is why they care so much about him when he runs off while a killer is lose in the hills, but when the oldest one does they hardly even bother to look for him. I mean it was pretty sad how they didn’t even seem upset that the eldest son was missing.) And

Evetually the cops kill the scientists and everything ends somewhat well.

It was HORRIBLE!  DON”T WATCH IT!

Even though it sucked I couldn’t leave it out of my countdown.

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Quite A Horror Story: Agatha Christie’s Poirot Hallowe’en Party (2011)

She is…a teller of the tall tales, a boaster, a little liar. So when she claims to have witnessed the murder, nobody believes her. And yet, she is… dead. 

So this was a film done by the BBC based on Agatha Christie’s novel, Hallowe’en Party. I think David Suchet is a perfect Poirot, as he looks just the way I always imagined Poirot to look like. However, something I don’t like about the modern retellings, is that  they tend to change a lot of the plot lines of the novel, and usually not for the better (Third Girl was awful. They didn’t use the best twist from the book). Rarely do I watch the film version before reading the book, which I did here, so I didn’t have the same unpleasantness as seeing them change plot lines that I thought were crucial in the book.

So the film starts out with Poirot’s friend, and mystery writer extraordinaire, Ariadne Oliver helping with a children’s Halloween party. All the kids are playing around, laughing, bobbing for apples, eating candy, etc. A little girl named Joyce starts talking to Oliver, telling her that she once witnessed a murder. Everyone makes fun of her, teasing and insulting her as she tends to always tell “tall tales”. No one believes her.

Later the children are all playing snapdragon, which they make sound so creepy. Instead of playing background music throughout the film, they play the children’s voices chanting the song in unison. It is as creepy as The Crucible scene when the girls are all “possessed”.

After the game is done, they are rounding up the children and discover Joyce missing. She is found drowned in a bucket that was used for bobbing for apples.

Oliver wastes no time at all, but immediately calls in Poirot to solve the case.

Poirot immediately looks into which murders in the town are unsolved, to see which ones have the potential to be the one Joyce saw. Many try to discourage him from doing so, telling him that Joyce was a liar and a storyteller. She did it to feel important and show off. Poirot is firmly decided that whether or not Joyce was telling the truth, someone out there is guilty of murder and thinks Joyce was a witness.

The possibilities of who Joyce might have seen are Mrs. Llewellyn-Smythe, the aunt of Rowena Drake’s late husband, apparently died of a heart attack. Her death is suspicious because of her will, it said that her au pair was to inherit everything over the family. Authorities believe that it was faked by the au pair, Olga Seminoff, who mysteriously disappeared after the forgery was discovered. Other candidates for murder involve Charlotte Benfield, a sixteen-year-old shop assistant found dead of multiple head injuries; Lesley Ferrier, a lawyer’s clerk who was stabbed in the back; and Janet White, a schoolteacher who was strangled.

Which one is the murder Joyce saw? Who committed it? Did Joyce even see a murder occur? Just like The Bad SeedThe Cabinet of Dr. Caligariand The Secret Window, this is one you have to check out for yourself and see where the truth lies.

The only thing I don’t like about this film, is the fact that Poirot disapproves of those who take enjoyment in such a holiday as Halloween. He thinks the macabre is not something you should be so joyous about. Well, I don’t; I love watching horror movies and getting into Halloween. That’s why I did my 31 Tales of Terror and Woe. In fact today marks 11 days left to Halloween! 😀

Here’s today’s scary post. More to come!

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To start Horrorfest from the begining, go to I Don’t Belong in the World

For the previous post, go to I’m No Warrior, I’m an Assistant Pig-Keeper

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For more on murder, go to Camp Blood

For more on Masterpiece Theater, go to A Hunky Helping of Manwich

For more on Halloween parties, go to A River of Candy Corn Runs Through It

For more film adaptions of books, go to I Bid You Welcome

For more on bobbing for apples, go to A Halloween Hello from the Austen Men