Following the current trend of vampire movies, Tim Burton released his new movie this summer called Dark Shadows that was based on the old gothic soap opera of the same name, starring Johnny Depp as Barnabas Collins, Michelle Pfeiffer as Elizabeth Collins Stoddard, Helena Bonham Carter as Dr. Julia Hoffman, and Bella Heathcote as Victoria Winters and Josette du Pres.
Barnabas and his family travel from Europe and establish the town of Collinsport, Maine and the beginning of their fishing empire. The master of Collinwood Manor, Barnabas is rich, powerful and quite a player of women...until he makes the grave mistake of breaking the heart of Angelique Bouchard, the family maid. A witch, Angelique dooms him to a fate worse than death: turning him into a vampire, killing his true love, and then burying him alive. Two centuries later, Barnabas is freed from his tomb and emerges into the very changed world of 1972. He returns to Collinwood Manor to find that his once-grand estate has fallen into ruin and the dysfunctional remnants of the Collins family have fared little better, each harboring their own dark secrets.
As a movie overall, I felt that Dark Shadows was fairly entertaining. Subtle, and not so subtle, bits of humor added to the overall impression that this was in fact centuries later. A strategically placed McDonald’s sign is one of my most favorite moments in Dark Shadows. However, I feel that the plot after Barnabas is freed is a bit rushed. I felt like I didn’t get enough time to get to know the characters and when Barnabas declared his love for Maggie/Victoria I was a bit surprised as I had no idea where that part of the story came from.
However, rushed plot aside, I felt that the movie was very well done in the effects department and overall the movie was entertaining and fun to watch and the cliff hanger at the end give the impression of Dark Shadows II and I find myself waiting anxiously for the next movie to come out.