Film: Edward Scissorhands

Posted by Sam Hayes On Monday, November 16, 2009

Edward Scissorhands was our lecture's film today. Produced by Tim Burton in 1990, Edward Scissorhands has become a cult film, and the beginning of a long-line of gothic creations  including 'Beetlejuice', 'Sleepy Hollow' and 'Sweeney Todd'. The film's story is based around a family living in an extreme stereotype of a surburban American town taking in a man who was created with scissors for hands. The whole film works around the contrast of normal and 'subnormal'. Firstly, there is the perfect little town, with bright colours and cheerful people, which is over-shadowed by a large dark, depressed-looking mansion on a high hill. This is acheived well through set design, with the colour-painted houses, bright green grass and sunshine whereas the mansion is shown to be dark, overgrown and up in the dark clouds.

This contrast is used throughout the film. When Peg, the motherly figure, enters the mansion, dressed in her pristine pink suit, with her hat and handbag. Her surroundings are distinguished from her instantly, with the strange machinery and dark, gritty walls. Again, this is shown when Edward, played by Johnny Depp, comes into the town, dressed in dark black clothes with a pale face and intimidating, sharp scissors for hands. This immeadiately clashes with his surroundings in the family home, of well-kept furniture, bright curtains and daylight.

I enjoyed the overall story but it did seem much more of a comedy than I remember, probably because last time I watched it I was really young. It was a very surreal and un-serious film, but, as Phil mentioned, it did highlight the consumerist nature of America, as well as pointing out a lot of stereotypes (such as all the men coming home from work at the same time and all the women in the town cooking food)

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I'm a student studying CG Arts and Animation at the University for the Creative Arts, I'm living in Kent.

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