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The Tale of Sweeney Todd (1997)

The fictional tale of the murderous 19th century barber (Ben Kinglsey) who sold his kills to a neighboring butcher (Joanna Lumley) for her renowned meat pies. A young innocent (Selina ... See full summary »

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3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Ben Carlyle
...
Selina Boyack ...
Alice
...
Tom
Sean Flanagan ...
Charlie (as Séan Ó'Flanagain)
Katharine Schlesinger ...
Lucy
...
Rutledge
...
Chambers
Niall Buggy ...
Vicar
Peter Jeffrey ...
Peter Woodthorpe ...
Mannheim
...
Head Clerk
...
Elderly Cutter
...
Bald Toothless Man
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Storyline

The fictional tale of the murderous 19th century barber (Ben Kinglsey) who sold his kills to a neighboring butcher (Joanna Lumley) for her renowned meat pies. A young innocent (Selina Boyack) and the dashing inspector (Campbell Scott) who tries to solve the murders are also thrown into the mix. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

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The Original Serial Killer


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Release Date:

19 April 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

L'échoppe des horreurs  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The final film of 'Peter Jeffrey (I)'. See more »

Connections

Version of Sweeney Todd (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not as good as the 2007 movie but worth a look.
26 January 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is a mildly diverting take on the Sweeney Todd tale with good performances by Ben Kingsley in the title role, and Joanna Lumley as an enterprising Mrs. Lovett with rotten teeth. Those of you who have seen the recent Depp movie and/or the Broadway version will find that the back story has been changed completely. Not wanting to give anything away, I will only say that the Swiftian social satire element of the original Sondheim version has pretty much fallen by the wayside.

Users here comment on the convincing 19th century atmosphere, but judging by the costumes and wigs, the setting is clearly late 18th century London and not 19th century Dublin although the movie was filmed there. There is even a small reference to the French Revolution so I would place it in about the 1790s. Having said that, costume, street scenes and general filth look very true to the late 1700s.

Unfortunately, the anemic musical score is not a good one and it actually detracts from the horror and ghoulishness of the film. On the other hand, the film is a good deal less gory than the 2007 version which may make it more appealing to the squeamish.


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