For all of those who swoon at the sight of Johnny Depp, I apologize in advance, for I am that rare breed of female that does not.
It isn’t that I fail to appreciate his talent. I have seen it, once or twice. Dark Shadow was actually host to several talented actors…..and that is one of the main reasons why I disliked the movie so much. As one only vaguely familiar with the original show, the opening did catch my interest. A woman scorned, as we’ve all heard, hell hath no fury. Now a vampire (or vampyre), Barnabas is punished by the woman whose love he spurned. A woman he obviously had initially felt was beneath him. Hurt and angry at the rejection, and seeing him with another woman, she lashes out with whatever means necessary. Unfortunately for him, she is a witch and has much at her disposal to exact revenge. Ultimately, she condemns him to remain, locked away in a coffin, buried six feet under with no intention of ever digging him back up.
Yet, as I witnessed this plot unfold, the back of my mind warned me: this is a dark comedy. I cringed at the thought of potential failing. The movie skipped decades later, until we were thrown into the 1970s. This is not my favorite decade, but I stick it out, hoping for something amusing. Michelle Pfeiffer, classic beauty and grace, is robbed of at least one. The makeup, though I understand more in part was to reflect the times, simply made her look old. Chloe Moretz played her part well, as the brooding and misunderstood teen. Jonny Lee Miller, an extremely talented actor, was reduced to a few lines here and there until, ultimately, he was shooed off screen via taxi.
Honest, I sat through the entire movie, hoping…. I hadn’t hoped for a lot, but perhaps even that was too much.
So, for all of those who are either Dark Shadows or Johnny Depp fans, this is a movie you don’t want to miss.
For the rest of us who anticipate witnessing the skills of actors such as Pfeiffer, Miller and Moretz, I would recommend avoiding this movie. There are others that showcase their talents in a more favorable light.