Animation Station: Corpse Bride (2005)

For this weeks Animation Station, Ellie Parkin dissects Tim Burton's Corpse Bride

Ellie Parkin
11th November 2019
Image: IMDB
When it comes to Halloween, and the dark eerie nights that the winter seasons bring, what better way to spend the evening than to divulge into the widely creative mind of Tim Burton. With the additional treat of the ever so talented Depp and Bonham Carter voiceover combination.

The film evokes a dark and devious plot, a two-tone visual set and a seriously unfortunate tale of love and loss, Corpse Bride is a stand-out film for the melancholy adults among us.

Image: IMDb Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter in Corpse Bride (2005)

Burton manages to create a world in which we can all envelop into, cleverly illustrating the mundane reality of the living, against the rivalled afterlife, of which the characters are ironically full of more life and soul. One of the most fascinating reasons to watch this film is the clever characterisation of the animations of which, they are so creatively idolised, spooky and frightening yet warm and loveable. They are all layered and all have stories which keep us encapsulated. The movement of social discrimination and politics is suggested all the way through via these animated characters. Granted it is still intended with parental guidance, yet it is still a bold move to have such dense themes running throughout, reflected non more so than when the two worlds collide. The living automatically take a guarded stance against the unknown, the assumed assault on their reality. Yet, they are harmless, and harmonious, wanting to connect and communicate as one united society.

The film is endearing all the way through, with inspired theatrical numbers, evocative heart to hearts and joyous whimsical moments to indulge.

A stance we could all embrace throughout this current rocky political journey we’re on, hint hint Boris.

Another reason why Corpse Bride stands out in amongst a sea of animated films, both of past and present, is that it does not try to conform to what a child may like. Burton sticks with his manner of creating outlandish characters, which all plays out beautifully well on screen in this paradoxical film, full of schizoid old school, Frankenstein-esque visuals. The film is endearing all the way through, with inspired theatrical numbers, evocative heart to hearts and joyous whimsical moments to indulge.

The movement of the film, and the journey the characters take is a true reflection of our innate human nature, certainly an endearing guide to love, loss and relationships. The choice that Victor Van Dort has to make, between his living soon-to-be wife, and recently deceased assumed wife. This is subsequently a journey of acceptance, laughter and high-spirited connections. It is unlike any other macabre child’s spooky movie, it has thrills, scares and spooks, yet simply the best kind. A good old family pleaser, with a classic poignant tale for all to enjoy.

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