The character of Edward Scissorhands is permanently ingrained into popular culture as one of the most easily recognisable characters of the big screen. I tend to think that films like this really emphasise what film-making should be all about. In one of his earliest roles, Johnny Depp plays the titular character of Edward Scissorhands, a gentle being created by an ageing, yet brilliant, inventor. Although given the gift of life and being granted lessons in etiquette and manners by his creator, his physical being remains unfinished. Edward has been given frightening shears for hands as a temporary measure while his inventor and guardian applies the finishing touches to his human appendages. In a tragic scene, his new human hands are presented to Edward, though his patriarchal architect dies before he can apply them, eternally condemning the now confused and lonely Edward to a life with terrible knives as hands.
Edward lives alone for a number of years in a mansion so rich in gothic splendour, it could have been the villains house in any Disney fairytale. His lonely and unassuming life is interrupted one day by an intrepid avon saleswoman who ventures into his seemingly abandoned house and is granted an encounter with Edward. Despite initially being appalled by his deadly-looking hands, she eventually overlooks his flaws and adopts him into her home back in the superficial and materialistic village below.
Edward is soon talk of the town. Initially granted a warm reception, he is praised for overcoming the adversity of his disability by the neighbours. His settling in period is fraught with the comical difficulties that you'd expect from someone trying to integrate with deadly blades as hands. Getting dressed, eating and even trying to sleep are daily chores that he struggles with, though soon his dexterity and talents with his scissor hands earn him national acclaim. During the process of becoming a minor celebrity, Edward develops a relationship with the daughter of the avon lady with whom he is staying (Portrayed by Winona Ryder). Immediately captured by his innocence and inherent beauty behind his horrifying visage, the love story is realistic and believable, though it enrages her current boyfriend who vilifies Edward as an ignorant freak.
As Edward's novelty begins to wear off and the general public run out of ways to profit from his talents for their own selfish needs, he gradually turns into a scapegoat and is made a figure of hate amongst the ruthless townsfolk. The movie culminates in Edward being chased back to his mansion by the baying village lynchmob who are desperate for his blood, despite the fact that he is probably the most perfect specimen and greatest force for good in the entire town.
The story mixes fairytale and fantasy, intentional cliché and charm. The innocence of Edward is juxtaposed with all of the tragedy and negative emotion that he experiences in a manner that is often heart-breaking for the viewer. Even the scars on his face give an impression of just how difficult life has been for Edward - a character that deserves nothing but love and compassion. The entire set, mixed with the movie's soundtrack give the impression that all of this i occurring inside a giant snow globe and I think that adds to the romance and magic of the fairytale. It's fair to say that Tim Burton has created a masterpiece, a film that is, in my opinion, timeless. I would definitely disagree that it has lost the magic, I watched it only the other day and was still captured by the tragedy, maybe a lesser man would've even shed a tear! A brilliant story and some remarkable performances from the whole cast.