Monday, January 21, 2008
Sweeny Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street - review
Sweeny Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (18)
Dir. Tim Burton
Reviewed by Matt Adcock
A dangerous spirit can be found haunting Old London Town. A dashing new barber has set up shop in Fleet Street guaranteeing the ‘closest shave you’ll ever have’ – not to mention that it could well be also the last shave you’ll ever have!? Believe me when I tell you that there’s no one who can handle a cutthroat razor quite like the talented Mr Sweeney Todd.
Strangely it seems business is also unnaturally brisk in Mrs Lovett's pie-shop situated right underneath Mr Todd’s barbers… There’s something quite special and yet hard to put your finger in – sorry I mean on - about Lovett’s new secret recipe ‘meat’ pies.
So cor blimey governor if this ain’t Tim Burton’s new musical sing a long horror show that takes the Broadway hit musical and brings it lavishly to superb big screen life. But before you rush out and book your tickets for a family night out of show tunes in the company of the wickedly cool Johnny Depp and the ‘never been more gothic – and that’s really saying something’ Helena Bonham Carter, be advised that is a red-blooded eighteen certificate film that comes with serious graphic slaughter to rival certain chainsaw wielding maniacs.
This latest incarnation of Sweeney Todd drips Burton’s trademark gothic visual flair, delivering a ticket to a fantastic archetypal Victorian London where revenge is the order of the day and vengeance driven homicidal tendencies go hand in hand with cannibalistic appetites. It certainly isn’t a very happy tale; in fact this is possibly the nastiest and most head wracking work of musical desolation ever to offer it’s dark heart to public gaze. But if you’ve the stomach for powerhouse gut-churning horror mixed with darkly comic tragedy – this will ravish your senses to within an inch of their life.
Depp is just awesome in the title role, notching up another iconic character with ease. Seems Mr Depp can sing too which helps as virtually all of the dialogue is sung, so make sure you’re ready for ditties about selecting murder victims, heartbreaking pain and general unpleasantness in lieu of witty banter. Some quality brief light relief comes in the riotous form of Sacha ‘Borat’ Baron Cohen whose faux Italian barber ‘Pirelli’ sports a cockney accent that puts even Depp’s to shame and is a character worthy of having his own whole spin off film. Yes, pretty much everything on offer here is premium high-class entertainment even if it deals in thoroughly unpleasant subject matter – don’t let that stop you singing along!
NEW DARKMATTERS RATING SYSTEM FOR 2008 (all ratings out of maximum 10):
Endorphin Stimulation: öööööööö (8)
- There will be blood, by the bucketfull!!
Tasty Action: ööööööö (7)
- Killing in the name of... revenge, singing all the while.
Gratuitous Babeness: ööööööö (7)
- Jayne Wisener (Johanna) is a hottie to watch, HBC still looks good too!
Mind Blight / Boredom: ö (1)
- None unless singing puts you to sleep.
Comedic Value: ööööööö (7)
- Black comedy with a sharp edge...
Arbitrary final rating: ööööööööö (9)
- An awesome cinematic experience!
Liable to make you:
“Not choose a wet shave at a barbers anytime soon"
DM Poster Quote:
“Don't miss this bloody brilliant tale, not by the hair on your chinny chin chin!?”
Darkmatters: H O M E