Thursday, April 23, 2015
Mini-Review - "The Nightmare Before Christmas" (1993)
I've decided to change-up the formula for the Mini-Reviews once again. Rather than releasing eight or nine mini-reviews all at once, recapping the last few movies I have watched on DVD, television, Netflix, etc., I will now be posting a new blog entry every time I finish a mini-review. Meaning that each review will now get its own blog post, and I'll be updating the blog a bit more often than I have recently.
I'm doing this because, as it has been pointed out, some readers who are interested in my thoughts on one film no longer have to read seven other reviews to get there. Plus, each review will now get its own time to shine.
With that said, let's start by taking a look at...
"The Nightmare Before Christmas" (1993)
A little known fact about this film - Though Tim Burton seems to take full credit for "The Nightmare Before Christmas," Burton did not direct it. That honor goes to Henry Selick, who would go on to direct "James And The Giant Peach" and "Coraline," another fantasy stop motion classic.
And yes, I would use the word "classic" to describe "The Nightmare Before Christmas." A classic movie, in my opinion, is a unique, one-of-a-kind piece of film that continues to entertain audiences long after its time in theaters. There is nothing else like it, and you can show it to your grandchildren as their faces light up like yours did.
The world of "The Nightmare Before Christmas" is reason enough to watch the film, as each major holiday has their own town, where it is perpetually that holiday, including Thanksgiving, Valentine's Day, Easter, and of course, Halloween and Christmas. The citizens of these towns reflect their holiday, as the state of mind and goals of the creepy creatures of Halloween town see everything as a scare, and unpleasant and creepy is good. Anything that doesn't belong to their way of life is strange and unacceptable to these ghouls and witches.
I just wanted to visit every one of those worlds and see how their land differs from ours. I'm sure some people would have fun in St. Patrick's Day Land, while others could get lost in Valentine's Day Land. Wonder if they'd consider a Baseball Opening Day Land (yes, people were talking about making that a national holiday).
The animation in "The Nightmare Before Christmas" is befitting of a Rankin/Bass claymation Christmas special, like "Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer" and "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town," while still having the creepy factor of any Tim Burton production.
Ultimately, that is what "The Nightmare Before Christmas" feels like - Tim Burton's take on the classic Christmas tales, adding an odd and foreign flavor to something that we already loved, in this case everyone's favorite holiday. The animation makes this film timeless, as we watch the backgrounds twist and turn to the characters demands and bring Halloween Town to life.
Final Grade: B+