What movie was that...?

21 December 2009

Edward Scissorhands

directed by Tim Burton

I have reviewed this film before, yes, and it is and will always be my favorite film of all time, but Tim Burton’s masterpiece, and it is truly a masterpiece, is such a magical filmic experience that it must be mentioned on any list that includes great holiday films. Built around a child’s simple question (Where does snow come from?), this modern fairy tale weaves a mesmerizing tale of friendship, isolation, and the power of the human heart. Johnny Depp is Edward, an invention left unfinished and alone in the old mansion of his “father” (a wonderful Vincent Price in his last and loveliest performance). Left with just a handful of razor sharp scissors for hands, Edward has no visitors until Peg, the kindly Avon representative from the suburb below comes calling. A bit of astringent here (for the nervous nicks on Edward’s face) and a pair of old clothes there (to cover his leathery, buckley frame), and Edward is part of the family, learning the suburban ropes and making friends. His heart belongs to Kim (a sweet Wynona Ryder), but Kim’s beau Jim (a sinister and frightening Anthony Michael Hall) has thoughts of his own about Edward’s gentle nature. It’s a brave new world for Edward, but when the neighborhood turns on him, he is forced back to his mansion for a chilling climax. Diane Wiest is sugary sweet as Peg, and Alan Arkin gives one of the high point performances in a career of high points as Bill. To see the answer to that youthful inquiry is to see one of the most heartbreaking and romantic of all tableaus in film, a truly breathtaking concept. See it. See it again, and let it fill you up.

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