Edward Scissorhands ★★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

I like the idea of Edward Scissorhands more than I really care for the movie itself. Stan Winston's design work looks great, Danny Elfman's score is beautiful, and the cast is all solid, but the story just doesn't engage me beyond a general thematic level. I'm never invested in anyone in the story enough to really care what happens to them.

Lately, I've realized how prominent class is in Tim Burton's storytelling. Obviously, most of the film is about poking fun at suburbia; middle class, white America. But then there's Jim (Anthony Michael Hall), the son of a very wealthy man, who is ultimately the chief antagonist of the picture. Jim is the very embodiment of "entitled", alternately placating and coercing everyone around him to get his way. If it means putting on the Eddie Haskell routine at dinner with the Boggs family, so be it, but Jim is more partial to intimidating his peers to get them to do what he wants.

Without Jim's antagonism, the suburbanites may well have come back around on Edward, but his ego won't allow that to happen. Jim's father, we're told, is sitting atop a fortune but refuses to share it with Jim. We're left to read that Jim is lazy and selfish, and he is, but it's not hard to guess how a kid who feels the world owes him his every whim, raised by a father who refused to share anything with his son, got to be the way he is. This isn't a reading of the film I would have likely come up with at all if not for this week's tour through Burton's filmography making me so mindful of the theme.

Commentary by Director Tim Burton **
I saw on RateThatCommentary.com some dismal remarks about this track, so I can't rightly claim surprise, but wow. Burton spaces out for minutes at a time, saying nothing, and when he does speak, he sounds so detached that it's hard to even pay attention. It's like listening to someone hopped up on medication, who doesn't want you to leave, but doesn't really have anything to talk about, either.

Featurette (4:39) **
This is just a typical fluff EPK-kind of piece of the principles offering blurbs about the movie and their roles. Forgettable.

Theatrical Trailer A (2:04) **
One of those generic entire-movie-summary trailers.

Theatrical Trailer B (2:16) ****
This one, I actually enjoyed. It's pretty much just different shots set to Elfman's lovely music, almost like a tribute montage more than an ad. No idea why it's in pan & scan, though. At 2:16, it's too long to have been a TV spot, so I guess this was run on VHS tapes?

Edward Scissorhands Re-Ranked on My Flickchart (#1216/1591)

Edward Scissorhands < Igor --> #1216
Visually, I love Edward Scissorhands, but the story bores me. Going with Igor here.

Edward Scissorhands < Spider-Man 2 --> #1216
Spider-Man 2 frustrated me, but at least I was invested in the characters. I was never really engaged by anyone in Edward Scissorhands.

Edward Scissorhands > What Planet Are You From? --> #1216
Danny Elfman's beautiful score is strong enough to win this one for Edward Scissorhands.

Edward Scissorhands > Life Without Dick --> #1216
Love me some Craig Ferguson, but his role is too small to help Life Without Dick win here.

Edward Scissorhands > Black Dog --> #1216
Other than Randy Travis and the soundtrack, there's not much for me to care about in Black Dog. I'm not big on Edward Scissorhands, either, but I appreciate enough about it to pick it here.

Edward Scissorhands > Sleeping Beauty (1959) --> #1206
I'm more into the aesthetics of Edward Scissorhands than I am into the story of Sleeping Beauty.

Edward Scissorhands > Fired Up! --> #1200
Neither story grabbed me, but I did enjoy the chemistry between Eric Christian Olsen and Nicholas D'Agosto in Fired Up!...just not as much as I enjoyed Danny Elfman's terrific score for Edward Scissorhands.

Edward Scissorhands > The War Room --> #1197
Being a liberal wonk and a fan of Tim Burton, I should be freaking out over this, but truthfully, I was bored by both. Going with Edward Scissorhands for Elfman's score and the visual look of the film.

Edward Scissorhands > Duck Dodgers and the Return of the 24 ½th Century --> #1196
I'd pick the original Duck Dodgers short over Edward Scissorhands, but not this sequel short.

Edward Scissorhands > The Sign of Four: Sherlock Holmes' Greatest Case --> #1195
If not for Ian Hunter's skeezy Dr. Watson, I'd probably pick The Sign of Four here, but he so detracts from that film that I'm going instead with Edward Scissorhands.

Edward Scissorhands < Spider-Man 2 --> #1195
Yeah, I'm sure.

Edward Scissorhands was re-ranked on my Flickchart to #1195/1591