Disappointment indeed, what the hell Happened Tim Burton? About a year and a half ago, when you and Depp finally announced that you would be taking on Dark Shadows was confident the franchise (if you can call it that) was in good hands. Here are two dude's who have made many movies together, and for the most part one of their team ups have been fantastic (Alice in Wonderland was questionable at times). The fact that they both have gone on record stating that they were fans of the 1966-1971 series made me feel an even bigger sense of confidence towards this adaptation.
With the first few pictures being released last fall, I was swinging on the hope chains in wonder: everything looked fantastic. Depp as Barnabas Collins, a stellar cast, even Helena Bonham Carter looked her part as Dr. Julia Hoffman. My anticipation grew. But then, after those pictures were released, we had almost four months of hearing nothing about this movie, besides an occasional new photo. My hope didn't diminish though, as I just would say to myself "the trailer will come in time". Then finally, I heard that they were premiering the trailer on Ellen? Yeah, a bit odd but whatever. And then the unholy trailer was released, and literally all dreams of this movie went down the toilet in that two minute trailer.
Before we even get to the shocking revelation that somehow, Burton turned this into a comedy, we already have the story faults of Barnabas being entombed on a beach. Yeah, that never happened (he was entombed in his original mansion), so I'm confused as to why that was changed. However, a small gripe, so whatever right? Then we get to the notion that, no, this isn't going to be the dark and violent vampire film based on the gothic soap opera that I wanted and or expected. Nope, instead Burton has decided to turn this into a dark comedy of sorts. Let's see? Barnabas Collins never once revealed to anyone in his family (in 1960's/70's) that he was a vampire. But the first thing we see Depp's Barnabas doing is just that. Then, he's taking over the family business, running into the witch (Angelique) who cursed him, and getting some vampire/witch boning on. You know, I like Johnny Depp as much as the next person, but personally I'm kind of tired of the slapstick, “Jack Sparrowish” Depp we've seen in the last decade. With “Dark Shadows”, Depp seems to have turned that into just this.
Now, this is just one fan's reaction to the trailer, and I realize I'm taking quite a dump on this, but I felt the need that I have to. I know the general public will see this movie and not even care about what it's previously based on, or even have the desire to watch the original show. And besides, in terms of outdated television, “Dark Shadows” ranks pretty high up there at this point. Still, it's just a shame to see something I love so much turned into this kind of trash.
Overall, it's just a shame. A shame that such a wonderful property and a movie that Depp and Burton have wanted to make for a decade has turned into what they think can be the “Beetlejuice” of this generation. I will instead, hang on to my VHS copy of “House of Dark Shadows”, as it is to me the most complete version of the Barnabas Collins story. Yes, I will still go and see “Dark Shadows”, and most likely I will cringe at every minute of it, but I can't help but walk away feeling this will be the biggest disappointment of 2012.