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Edward Scissorhands (1990)

Edward Scissorhands (1990)

The favourite classic film Edward Scissorhands came to life in 1990, when relatively new director Tim Burton, and young actor Johnny Depp first collaborated on a movie. Now famous for working together on countless film successes from Alice in Wonderland (2010), Sleepy Hollow (1999), and Corpse Bride (2005), this original film is still my favourite. Like most Tim Burton pictures, it is undoubtedly dark, creepy, and a little on the abstract side, but in my opinion is one of the most heart-felt and wonderfully tragic films ever made. The soundtrack to the film is beautifully written by Danny Elfman, and really gives the story life. It goes from quiet and meaningful, to upbeat and dramatic, and the choral piece Ice Dance makes for one of the most romantic film scenes in cinema.


The film centres on the title character’s life after he is discovered in an abandoned mansion by a make-up saleswoman, Peg (Dianne Wiest), who is selling door to door. She soon realises that he is not ‘normal’, which becomes obvious when she sees he has scissors for hands, explaining the film’s title. She then decides to take care of him and brings him home to live with her family. It becomes apparent that Edward was not born, but was in fact ‘made’. The rest of the film then focuses on his mission to gain acceptance into the community despite his oddities, and on his feelings for Peg’s beautiful teenage daughter (Winona Ryder).


The film ends beautifully, and leaves you wanting more. Though it may seem bizarre to some and completely irrelevant to others, the film is so deep because it can be seen as a dramatization of real everyday issues; most centrally of discrimination, such as racism. It questions human nature and the way that people who have different beliefs or cultures to the majority are often outcast, humiliated or hated, and shows the effect that it can have on an individual when society behaves in this way.Dorothea Lange, a famous photographer once said "The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera", and I think that a good film should work in the same way. The story can be as abstract and creative as you like, but the fantasy on the screen should always teach you about the reality outside of it, and this film is a prime example of one that helps the viewer to see the world in a different light.


I can only give this film high praise, and if you haven’t already, suggest that you immediately give it a watch!!!

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