Frankenweenie: Good Family Film

Victor reanimates Sparky, a scene that starts creepy & turns emotionally heart-warming

Written by: DizBuzz

Tim Burton's newest film, Frankenweenie debuted this weekend, & I had a chance to view it on the opening night.  I caught the Frankenweenie preview at Disneyland when we were on vacation & it sparked my interest to watch the film.

Before I viewed the preview I had little interest in seeing the movie, because I think the television ads over-emphasized the creep factor without highlighting the wonderful & surprisingly heart-warming theme that actually drives the film.

The film was very sweet, cute & even sad at times.  The movie was filled with funny moments, many visual.  You might even say that it was ‘punny' at times.  There were nods throughout the film at many pop-culture horror movies.

Where Frankenweenie really shines is that it is full of heart.  The premise is that poor Victor unexpectedly loses his best friend, and furry pal, Sparky.  He is overcome with sadness, but gets the idea to try to bring him back to life, also his last name just happens to be Frankenstein.  Sparky, the dog, is very cute & the ‘life' of the movie, & manages to become even more adorable when he comes back to life.

While the premise seems a bit macabre, & the film is shown in black & white, the heart of the film is really the love of a boy for his dog.  Anyone who has had a beloved pet will be able relate to this film.  Above all, I think you should see Frankenweenie because it is entertaining, & isn't that why we go to the theater?

The visuals are very good.  With only grey scales Tim Burton created a very rich landscape of textures.  At times you forget you are watching stop-motion animation which in itself is a craft that few people attempt, today.  Burton, of course, is a master at it.

Now, I do think this will be too scary for most young children.  It has a rating of ‘PG' not ‘G' and I think for most children the suitable age would be at least 5.  During the preview my 2 year old (almost 3) told me that it scared him so we did not take my son to the full movie. (See Don't Be Afraid to take your Toddler to Disneyland) It is not terrifying, just a little creepy, but I would hate to see you waste your hard earned money on tickets only to have to turn around & leave the theater.

If you are looking for a good film with lots of heart, go see Frankenweenie.  It's funny & surprisingly sweet.  What seems like a creepy premise is handled with taste & lots of love.  I don't want to give away anymore, so go see it for yourself!

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