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Tim Burton Films - Ranked
Movie list created by Bml93
Sort by: Showing 19 items
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Worst to Best
Planet of the Apes (2001)
I love Tim Burton. Therefore, I feel obligated to say that I don't count this as a Tim Burton film. If you ask me, he never made it. And it doesn't really look and feel like a Tim Burton film. It looks like a film that any director could have helmed, and gotten pretty much the same, exact thing.
The only thing that is keeping me from giving this film a lower rating is its soundtrack and because no matter what I decide to think, Tim Burton's name is still on the poster. But this film is really a disaster in nearly every department. The acting, the dull action, the silly plot and a twist that doesn't make any sense whatsoever.
At times, this is everything I want from a Tim Burton film. A visually impressive film that delves into the macabre and strange. There's some really creepy imagery present here and Burton certainly knows how to have fun with that. A lot of the elements here are straight in his wheelhouse, with even stop-motion (done with CGI though) looking skeletons appearing. There's a lot of fun here, but as an overall experience, I found it to be one of the more disappointing Burton films.
The problem is that the story is a convoluted mess with glaring plot holes appearing essentially everywhere. The film is full of exposition, yet none of it really helps me connecting the dots. The overall idea of the film is easy enough to understand, but there are so many minor things that doesn't make any sense, that it in the end adds up to a whole lot. Another problem is the huge amount of characters. Very few of them are given any characterization beside their powers and they're more or less just blank slates. I adore Eva Green, but she's a bit under utilized here.
I did have my fair share of fun with this film, but it's a shame to see that Burton didn't make more out of this film, seeing as every ingredient for an amazing Burton film is present here.
Dark Shadows (2012)
I always look forward to a Tim Burton film. Because I love all of his films (I don't count the ape-thingy), so I knew I were going to like this one as well. Burton, Johnny Depp and vampires. I thought I would most definitely be in for a treat. And I liked it. It may not be as good as some of his earlier works, but it is still a very entertaining film.
I see some people have complained about the rhythm in it , that Burton doesn't manage to combine the comedy, drama or spooky horror in it. That's bullshit if you ask me. He does it superbly. It ain't even that much horror in it. Surely there are some slaughtering of some innocent people here, but I don't see why that would make this a horror film? It's more of a fantasy with several campy jokes. Why complain that it doesn't care you when it's not supposed to do so in the first place? That's like giving Schindler's List a poor rating because it ain't funny.
But this is much more of a comedy, and it's great at it! It's much funnier than several actual "comedy's". Several of the jokes regarding Depp's character and his small knowledge of the decade he has arrived in is hilarious. Speaking of Depp, he is great. His role might in some ways be a bit similar to other Burton-roles, but so what? It works. If it ain't broken, why fix it? He has great chemistry with Eva Green, who is criminally hot. The supporting cast is solid, particularly Jackie Earle Haley, who is very amusing.
You can't forget to mention Burton's amazing Gothic visuals. They are breathtakingly beautiful. It's a visual experience just as much as it is a fun comedy. Even the soundtrack is great and captures the feel of the 70's excellently.
Still, there are something I didn't like about it. Chloe Moretz as a poorly animated werewolf. That was completely unnecessary. It didn't add anything. Then there is some jokes that's possibly a little dumb, but that's something that happens in nearly every comedy. Some may dislike this, believing it's failure in genre-mixing. Well, you have missed the point.
Mars Attacks! (1996)
Big Eyes (2014)
When you can say that Big Eyes is one of Tim Burton's more "normal" films, you know you're dealing with a weird director, seeing as Big Eyes is still pretty fucking weird. It's a well-acted and well-directed film with a lot of memorable moments and weirdness.
A highlight for me was the constant scene-chewing by Christoph Waltz. He's delightfully over-the-top in every spectre of his performance.
Pee-wee's Big Adventure (1985)
Batman Returns (1992)
Like Tim Burton's first film about the Caped Crusader, it does feature some really great, dark, Burton-ish visuals. He is indeed a master at creating a dark, brooding and somewhat macabre atmosphere.
He is also a master at putting together a weird cast and making them fit perfectly. Danny DeVito as the Penguin is an example of a perfectly cast character. That he actually was nominated for a Razzie is just outrageous and shows how ridiculous those awards are. Michelle Pfeiffer is very sexy as Catwoman (all though, I do think Anne Hathaway is much sexier.)
Alice in Wonderland (2010)
I've never understood the problem that people have with Alice in Wonderland. I think it's a charming, funny and delightfully sweet adventure film. It possesses enough of that weirdness you'd come to expect from Burton, and from a film in this world. People may be slightly tired of Johnny Depp in these kind of roles, but one can't deny that he's exceptionally good.
I do sit with a feeling that Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is either loved or hated. I'm in the first category. I love this film, and I think it's better than the first rendition of this classic Roald Dahl tale.
Johnny Depp's performance might be odd, but I find him to be so loveable and quirky in this role. The visuals are splendid, the musical numbers are extremely funny and cleverly handled.
Sleepy Hollow (1999)
Is there a Tim Burton film that could be said to be the one that is the most "Tim Burton-ish" it is arguably Beetlejuice. Every ingredient for a Tim Burton film is present here. While some of his other films might focus a bit more on some of his trademarks than others, Beetlejuice captures everything that makes Burton the director he is, and shows it to us for our entertainment.
The emotional level is not as high here as in other Burton films, but I find this film to be incredibly awesome due to grotesque and macabre story. There's also just something delightfully amusing about it being a musical.
It's visually great, the performances are superb, it's constantly surprising and basically everything you'd want from a Tim Burton film.
Ed Wood (1994)
Tim Burton is a genius when it comes to animation (or films in general, if you ask me). I'm a huge fan of stop motion and this is quite possibly one of the best stop motion films I've ever laid my eyes on. A beautifully crafted, magnificent 3D horror adventure in elegant black & white.
Frankenweenie is a cute, heart-warming, macabre and extremely weird horror film for children, while remaining a wonderful homage to older horror classics for adults. But that's not to mean that we can't take part in this emotional journey or get affected by the massive amount of warmth that Frankenweenie offers.
Corpse Bride (2005)
Whenever I think about Corpse Bride, my thoughts immediately try to figure out why it's not mentioned more often by people, when it comes to discussing the absolute best animated films. I'm sitting here with a feeling that Corpse Bride is being shamefully overlooked and underrated. Even by Tim Burton fans.
Tim Burton has crafted a beautiful film. A film that manages to combine Burton's typical sense for macabre fun with a lot of charm, humour, darkness and emotion. The animation is wonderfully executed and the music is mesmerizingly beautiful and haunting. One of my all time favourite film moments is Victor and Emily's piano duet. That gets me emotional.
It's actually a bit unfair to compare it to Christopher Nolan's masterful trilogy. Mainly because those films are on a whole other level, but also because they are made in two completely different decades. Tim Burton's version of Batman ain't as pitch black as Nolan's films, but it is still pretty dark compared to other superhero films. And like I've mentioned previously, I prefer dark superhero films. Particularly the anti-hero aspect of Batman. Burton does with great skill manage to create a believable world, but he does never truly abandon the fun side of the comic books. Which are mostly thanks to his creation of Gotham City, but also due to one particular character.
Jack Nicholson is wonderful as The Joker. While I do prefer Heath Ledger's more menacing and terrifying portrayal of Batman's arch nemesis, there is no denying that Nicholson's crackling lunatic is wonderful as well. Michael Keaton is a great Batman, but it is truly The Joker that makes this film as wonderful as it is. I never stops laughing at any of his twisted gags.
Edward Scissorhands (1990)
Big Fish (2004)
The father-son dynamic of Big Fish is so beautifully explored through Burton's visuals, and the imagination and playfulness of the story. It's a film with a lot of depth, warmth, emotion, charm and humor. It's in my eyes Burton's absolute finest film and it's one of those films that have inspired me the most throughout my life. It's a magical wonder of fantasy and love. A film that pulls on your heartstrings. It's a storyteller's wet dream.
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