A Dark Director

         In a world where movies dominate the magazines, television, and water cooler talk, directors are some of the most idolized and revered people in the minds of the youth. Films have become to be known as the directors piece of art and are sometimes associated with certain directors who have made a name for themselves. Directors like Steven Spielberg, Ron Howard, John Woo, George Lucas, and Martin Scorsese dominate the screens. However, one of the most talented and diverse directors of our present time would be Tim Burton. His dark visions and imaginative takes on the film industry bring something to the big screens that the others do not have.

         Tim Burton made a very few movies before he became the cult-loved director that he currently is. One of his first, Frankenweenie (1984), tells the story of a boy and his dog with a bit of the monster movie twist. His first claim to fame, however, was Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure (1985). While the movie was not made in the style that he would become known for, it allowed him the ability to make those movies that would become a fan favorite. Beetlejuice (1988) was his first real chance to show the world what he was made of, and the success of this film enabled him to make more like it. His next film, after Batman (1989), Edward Scissorhands (1990), would put him on the charts. With its dark fairy tale essence, this movie told the story of a misfit trying to fit-in in a suburban town. Batman Returns (1992), the sequel to his popular first Batman film, created a franchise in which he produced two more films in the series.

         After this, Tim Burton produced probably his most famous and prolific movie to date: The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993). With the use of stop-motion animation, Burton showed the world Christmas spirit in his own fashion: with dark images and characters. Burton has gone on to make many more movies, including his own take on the legend of Sleepy Hollow (1999), Planet of the Apes (2001) and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005). His most recent film, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007) was a hit at the box office and has brought the Broadway film back into the limelight.

         Tim Burton, while not one of the most widely known directors, is, in my opinion, one of the most talented. His vision for the films of dark fairy tales and fantasy are unmatched, and I hope that he continues to grace the screens with his horror-esque sense of direction.

Lorrie Veach

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