©2008 Big Empire Industries and Randy Shandis Enterprises
Every right imaginable is reserved.


This week:
The Corpse Bride

Filthy says:
"Dead, singing puppets."

There should be a warning label on The Corpse Bride. I mean, if they're gonna warn middle-aged men that sucking too much beer can be hazardous to their unborn babies' health, the government should step in and let folks know that this movie has a shitload of show tunes in it. Fuck, I'd rather intravenously feed a baby Pabst than force him the hear the treacly "I'm Gonna Make It!" style Broadway horseshit scattered through this movie. And I love kids, especially little ones, when they're drunk. Don't get me wrong. I understand what abuse is, and I would never let a child get drunk and drive a car. But if you think kids say the darndest things, you ain't heard nothing until you give a pint of cheap bourbon. Seriously, I don't know who likes these kinds of songs besides brainwashable children and lonely women who like them because they think they're supposed to.

Another warning maybe should be about the unbearable puns. The goth movie is littered with macabre puns about "losing heads" and "cutting someone short" like it's broken glass under the sand at Bolsa Chica State Beach. It seems to me that puns are the sort of thing that nobody enjoys, but a lot of people assume everyone else does. They have the same aura as John Grisham novels: they appear clever without ever being so.

The Corpse Bride is a Tim Burton stop-motion movie of clunky plotting and weak characters. It's also short. Not short enough, but at 75 minutes at least you can get out of the theater quick and see if anyone beat your high score on California Run sooner. In a victorian era that is gothic in a cutesy, Disney sort of way, a bumbling heir to a fish fortune has been arranged to marry the daughter of local land barons (Helena Bonham Carter), who need his family's money to go along with their title. The bumbler's parents want the prestige of marrying into royalty.

Depp is a bumbler with little confidence. He is so nervous during wedding rehearsals that the priest orders him to return once he is better prepared. While practicing, he wanders into a graveyard and accidentally voices his vows over the grave of a woman who was murdered on her wedding day. The corpse reels him in from underground, says yes, and they are married.

Of course, Depp doesn't want to be married to this translucent broad. I imagine his reasoning is much like the Harelip's first husband's: It's too damn hard being with someone whose skin is so clammy and loose, and too unpleasant to screw without poking your finger into an open lesion. Even if she does have other redeeming qualities.

What follows is sort of low-rent Dickensian turmoil, with class warfare, a sinister outsider with all the subtlety of Snidely Whiplash. It is the same old story of a man caught between two paramours; only this time one living and one dead. The characters never rise above stereotypes. The land baron parents are cold and calculating. The nouveau riche are clumsy and unsure. The living bride is meek and sweet. The dead bride is sweet and slightly less meek. The hero caught between is a big fat fucking zero. I guess the ladies love him because he can play the piano. But that's the only identifying characteristic he has.

The clay animation is no better than in The Nightmare Before Christmas and James and the Giant Peach. It's basically the same, only this time swathed in more gray than Price-Waterhouse retreat. If you want to watch 75 minutes of stop-motion, then this is basically you're only chance. But if you want more depth and less fucking singing, skip this movie. God, the fucking singing, and the tedious, omnipresent soundtrack by Danny Elfman. More gothic, swelling choruses

I don't understand why clay animation can't be connected to a richer story. The Corpse Bride is completely tossed off. The dialog is rote, the emotions are routine and the characters are as dull as Mrs. Filthy's wedding band. Since there is no advance in the quality of the animation, what is the improvement here over previous, similar efforts?

On the plus side for people who jack off to clay (and I know there are a lot of you): The women in this movie have the most impossibly enormous and round tits I've ever seen. It's as though they casted the movie from some Claymation-world version of Juggs. Bring a box of tissues if you've ever dreamed of titfucking plasticine.

Two Fingers for The Corpse Bride. It's probably the perfect movie for fucked up eight-year olds. But for fuck up of every other age, there's better.

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JP Sarni of Sirius Radio

The Prize Winner of Defiance Ohio is "One of the best films I have ever seen. Tell everyone you know. It will stay with you for years to come!"

Just Like Heaven is "Funny and touching...it will charm the pants off you!"

Filthy's Reading
Dan Harrington - Harrington on Hold 'Em, Vol. 1

Listening to
Deerhoof - Holdy Paws


Straight Story