Monday, 19 December 2016

Edward Scissorhands​ (1990)

Fig 1: Poster/DVD cover
Tim Burton's Edward Scissorhands​ (1990) is a romance, fantasy (said to be horror and comedy as well) film, which starts by an elderly woman telling her granddaughter a bedtime story about where does the snow comes from. She tells the story of a young man called Edward created by an inventor, who have died before completely finishing him, which left him with scissor hands. After many years of Edwards creation a beauty products saleswoman Peg Boggs finds him all alone in his Gothic mansion and decides to take him in and heal his scares. Not long after 'adopting' the young boy she discovers that despite the terrifying and threatening look, Edward is a very kind, selfless and shy man. The family one by one starts to accept and love him, while Edward falls in love with the teenage daughter Kim. All of the neighbours seem to accept him, and are taking advantage of his hedge-trimming and hair-cutting skills expect two people, a religious woman and Kim's boyfriend, Jim. Edward gets into huge trouble, when Jim uses Edward to pick the lock and they break into a house for money. When the alarms go off, the group of teens (including Kim and Jim) leave Edward behind, who is arrested by the police. After his return the neighbours keep a distance from him and not really accepting him anymore. When the family are setting up Christmas decoration he carves an angel from ice, which creates snow while he cuts the material, in which Kim finds joy and starts to dance under the falling snow. By accident Edward cuts her hand, following in arguments with Jim, the couple breaks up and Jim gets drunk in the van. Jim decides to drive the car while drunk and almost hits Kevin, Kim's young brother, who Edward saves, but accidentally cuts the boy's face and that is when Edward is chased back to the castle. Kim and Jim follows him where a fight between the two men causes Jim's death and with a kiss Kim and Edward say goodbye before the people find him. The story ends with the elderly woman revealing that she is Kim and Edward is up on the mountain continuing to sculpt ice.
Fig 2: Young Edward and his 'father' the inventor
"The theme of this story was to basically confront the viewer with an ironical aspect of being fitted into society." (Adams, 2012) The message of this film is about outcasts and how society reacts to someone who is different and major misunderstanding of kindness. It is said that Burton is reflecting upon himself with Edward's character, as his style and being very different from others shines through. In the film people only accept him because they an take advantage of him, however after the smallest mistakes, community attacks him without finding much of a reason. Edward's kind nature also goes missed by the people and they find a way to destroy anything that has good in it. Furthermore, the film works with the idea of 'beauty and the beast' as we see love interest between the young and beautiful Kim and the 'monstrous' outsider Edward. While it is clear that Edward is nowhere near a monster and is very lovable, but his appearance suggest otherwise.
Fig 3: Family dinner
Fig 4: Edward and Kim hugging
"Not that any subtlety applies to the wonderful look of the film, with its Addams Family-style mansion plonked on the edge of a pastel-hued American suburb..." (Lee, 2014) Most of the story takes place in a typical American tow, with lots of colours; all husbands go to office work at the same time, with almost identical cars and the wives are baking pies, chatting over the phone and doing general housework in terrifyingly similar houses. As the objects and surrounding of the people is the same they try to express 'individuality' by having different colours of the exact same items. It is very ironic how they keep trying to blend in, but be different, while coming across someone who really is different, it is not acceptable. However looking upon the hill, there is a European style, Gothic and dark castle/mansion, that does not fit into the 'perfect' image and is avoided by everyone who lives under the hill. The overall design says that the story takes place in the 1950s, where the colours that are often seen are pastel, but the house is overall very colourful, with sometimes not matching colours paired. The castle where Edward lives is very dark and gloomy, with lots of originality and interesting or unusual shapes of decorations and objects.
Fig 5: Film set
Fig 6: American style
Fig 7: European Gothic style
"Johnny Depp is sensational in the lead role, summoning anxiety, melancholy and innocence with heartbreaking conviction. And it's all in the eyes: his dialogue is cut-to-the-bone minimal." (Lee, 2014) This said, Edward does not speak a lot and he is almost silent throughout the whole film, but when he does speaks there is only general kindness in his words. We see the main character in all black leather with sharp scissor hands, but when he moves the its a bit goofy and gentle. The audience quickly grows to love Edward and empathise with him.
Fig 8: Edward Scissorhands costume


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1 comment:

  1. FYI :