Ah, I just remembered Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, which sucked. That's the thing, whenever Burton tries to harbor a new aesthetic he keeps the same attitude and it comes off as facetious and charmless.
Thanks for the reply Line.
Not trying to hi-jack this thread, so don't flame me on it.
But isn't the faux-goth style of direction a Burton signature? Hitchcock and many early, you could say "gothic-style" directors hadn't harbored the art of color until the the early 50's, late 40's. Do you think that if the Directors of Old had the color to elaborate and expand on, would they not have done work similar to Burton's? Take for example Sleepy Hollow, which has very dull and cold colors as the basis. While Sleepy Hollow isn't going to make my Top 10 Movies list any time soon, I do think of it as a kind of macabre look on society of that time. His adaptation to the Fairy Tale of Ichabod Crane and the Legend of Sleepy Hollow does show a step in his consistant career, no?
As for the actual film Sleepy Hollow, I'm not a fan. What I found to be an engaging retelling of a story when it was first released is now just another Hot Topicized Burton fairy tale which is overly dependent on amateurish motifs and cheap scare tactics.
Stanley Kubrick, 1975
People as a whole have a tendency to improperly critique films such as this, where the grandeur and scope of directorial detailing outweighs the proper critical influences of one's cinephilic vision. Without the intention of overly generalizing, it's clear that many viewers largely ignore other cinematic influences and rely far too heavily on merely commending the filmmakers' efforts on a technical level which, for whatever reason, seems to be enough for some. As a whole, films of gross technical influences create less thematic discussion as the completion of it seems to be regarded as the most extraordinary achievement in itself. Putting all of this aside, yet still keeping it within arm's length of retaining, there are times when a film is produced that transcends even the grandest of standards in terms of dramatically epic themes and the appropriate attention given to all aspects beyond. Barry Lyndon is such a film.
The rise and fall tale of young Redmond Barry focuses on several aspects of humanity, even if the title character himself exhibits few qualities that we as humans would like to associate him with. Perhaps it's a personal reflection on my own part but the brass naivety and over-extending ambition of Barry is something worth noting, or at least examining. Far too often he's labeled as a terrible person and in end perhaps that is indeed what he becomes but there's something of the softening beauty of Kubrick's living art that provides a unique perspective in allowing one to see the metamorphic tendencies that accompany success. Though his intentions are always fueled by the id, he acts on these impulses with such strong conviction and unexposed innocence, at least at our tale's opening, that the audience is, in a way, being prodded to take note of how the outside stimuli will change this young man. Despite an awkward and most disapproving relationship early in the film he remains the full embodiment of the awkward fool throughout the remaining time, though the clarity and moral competence of his influences begins to shift drastically as even his fleshly desires stray from those of perceived passion to pure lust.
Examples of other Earthly sins follow Redmond during his travels, and accordingly ours with him, but I feel that it's just as pertinent, if not more so, to touch on the presentation in this particular work. The craftsmanship is more in-tune with a series of masterwork paintings through which a lense slowly pans out on as if the darting around of our own eyes tend to mimic those viewing a gallery of brilliant paintings. As we're exposed to more and more within the frame everything comes alive as if a tiny individualized world is having life breathed into it before our eyes. It's truly a sight for the eyes to behold and an even more endearing one for the cinematic mind.