Saturday, 11 January 2014 06:19
Dark Shadows - Out of Focus Film that Entertains Written by Churchill Guevarra
It’s a conventional fish out of water movie that is thoroughly enjoyable to watch when not taken seriously. Thanks to Johnny Depp’s idiosyncratic performance, ’Dark Shadows’ made a vampire movie palatable (at least in my humble opinion) and that’s quite an accomplishment especially with the oversaturation of tween vampire movies/TV shows in the entertainment industry this day and age.
Depp was just literally playing ‘Captain Jack Sparrow’, only with fangs, pale skin, antiquated fancy clothes and shiny, pomade-drenched hair instead of the iconic dreads. He relished on the role and ran away with it. The high point of the film is the 3D rendered destructive nookie between Barnabas (Johnny Depp) and the vengeful witch Angelique (Eva Green). The lowest point, well Barnabas’ ‘cow-licked’ pointy bangs.
‘Dark Shadows’ is undeniably silly and full of plot holes but who cares? It’s a vampire flick that stars a pale-skinned Depp, featuring his usual off-beat antics for crying out loud! But I must admit, it had a timid ending and I somehow thought that some key scenes leading up to its climax along with the expensive 3D special effects that fueled them were quite squandered. Probably the reason why it was panned by critics at various movie sites especially at Rotten Tomatoes and it received a lukewarm response at the box office.
Nevertheless, there were some funny lines delivered here and there particularly between Depp and Chloe Grace Moretz’s angsty teen character Carolyn Stoddard. The acting was decent and the set pieces were flamboyant and glossy—something you’d expect from a Burton film. The direction, however, was all over the place. There were some scenes and characters that felt gratuitous and totally unnecessary.
‘Dark Shadows’ isn’t a perfect film but unlike other vampire movies out there, it didn’t take itself too seriously. Instead, it was more than willing to play along with the joke and for doing so; it has opportunely distanced itself from the gloomy stigma of modern-day vampire films.
So long as you stop pointing at the glaring plot holes, character flaws and topsy-turvy direction, you’ll enjoy the ride—like disco and 70’s music. I guess my point is this: Leave your brain at the door and you’ll enjoy it as much as I did. Despite all of the film’s shortcomings, it was surprisingly fun and in my case, it was a great date movie. I can’t say the same with the tween vampire TV shows/movies that are constantly being rammed down my--and any other self-respecting moviegoer’s—throat these days. 3 out of 5 stars for not being annoyingly morose.