Corpse Bride (2005) Movie Review

By: Alex Phuong (Beer Two) –

Tim Burton has his own fan-base because of his cult classics like Ed Wood (1994) and Edward Scissorhands (1990). He is also very well-known for his collaborations with Johnny Depp. Because of that teamwork, it is no surprise that Burton would cast Johnny Depp in the leading role of Corpse Bride (2005). The only problem is… Johnny Depp never appears on screen! That is because this film is a stop-motion animated feature. Even though audiences can only hear the voices of such a phenomenal cast, this film has essentially become a modern classic as well as another cult classic for devoted Tim Burton fans.

A Toast

This film actually presents a very original and compelling love story. Johnny Depp does well as Victor, and the romance between him and the titular corpse bride is genuinely there. This unusual (but also very unique) love story can also touch viewers emotionally as it teaches them to love someone for the sake of inner beauty instead of through the admiration of superficial appearances. Indeed, part of the reason why this film is spectacular is because of its profound explorations of love in a modern family film.

Beer Two

Even with such an original love story, that same story was the reason why this film received criticism, especially from parents with very young children. Some critics have argued that this film promotes necrophilia (please look up that word on your own). Some people might also find this film very frightening. Then again, such horrific elements are trademarks of Tim Burton’s directorial style, which explains why Tim Burton is an acquired taste for moviegoers.

Verdict

This film might have lost the Academy Award for “Best Animated Feature” to Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit,” but Corpse Bride remains yet another fan favorite for people who like Tim Burton, Johnny Depp, and/or Helena Bonham Carter. Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter actually did so well together in this film that it is really not that surprisingly that Burton would cast them in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007). It is also a funny coincidence that both of those films share parallels because of their dark subject matter, Gothic tones, and that they are both modern musicals. Indeed, Corpse Bride might have a grisly title, but it remains one of the most remarkable animated films of the Twenty-First Century, and is also arguably one of the best animated features in cinematic history (while also maintaining a style similar to The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993), which is yet another Tim Burton classic).

Corpse Bride (2005) Drinking Game

Take a Drink: every time the town crier makes announcements in the local community while ringing his bell

Take a Drink: during every recitation of the poetic wedding vows

Drink a Shot: every time the corpse bride’s eyeball pops out (which might or might not include her talking to her maggot friend)

And Cheers: during the show-stopping musical number “The Remains of the Day” (not to be confused with the 1993 classic starring Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson)

About Alex Phuong

Alex Andy Phuong earned his Bachelor of Arts in English from California State University-Los Angeles in 2015. His love affair with cinema began after discovering Turner Classic Movies in the summer of 2004. His favorite film director is Woody Allen, and his favorite movie star is Kate Winslet.

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