Tim Burton's "Hansel and Gretel" is a live action and stop motion animated film short featuring Japanese actors and striking set designs reminiscent of his later work in films such as "... See full summary »
When young Victor's pet dog Sparky (who stars in Victor's home-made monster movies) is hit by a car, Victor decides to bring him back to life the only way he knows how. But when the bolt-necked "monster" wreaks havoc and terror in the hearts of Victor's neighbors, he has to convince them (and his parents) that despite his appearance, Sparky's still the good loyal friend he's always been. Written by
It's easy to see where this wonderful little tale got its inspiration from. It was from the 1931 film 'Frankenstein', which is only strengthened by the fact that this is filmed in black and white. This short is like a lighter version of 'Frankenstein'. It's more cute than scary or macabre, although it still has some of that familiar dark feeling. Above all the things, this is film-making of quality, with awesome visuals in a Gothic style.
The music is terrific, the pace is excellent, the locations cinematography is marvelous, the characters are generally likable, the actors are great, there is humor... it's a little movie that oozes charm and nostalgia.
Barret Oliver, the cute kid from 'The Neverending Story' (1984) and 'D.A.R.Y.L.' (1985), is once again terrific, here as Victor Frankenstein. Shelley Duvall aka "Olive Oyl" offers another great performance as Susan Frankenstein. Daniel Stern is Ben Frankenstein. Even here he already showed potential as a comic (and this was years before becoming a superstar with the first two 'Home Alone' movies). Even looking younger and without beird and mustache, ain't no mistaking on that "Marv" face.
And there is also Sparky the Bull Terrier, awesome as Sparky (just like his name in real life). Sparky is a nice name for a dog. Bull Terriers have got to be among the most peculiar-looking dogs, in great part thanks to their unique head in the shape of an egg.
The title 'Frankenweenie' is unusual. I can perfectly see where it got the "Franken" from. As for the "weenie", it probably is meant to make one realize it's a "kid's version" so that it's suitable for kids to watch and not scary like the original tale.
This "piece of a watchmaker's shop" is the best thing Tim Burton ever did. This is his masterpiece.
Title in Portugal: 'Frankenweenie', I guess.
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