Going into the movie, I knew it was a re-make of a hit Broadway musical. However, to my astonishment, it seems as though many did not know this little fact about "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street." In the first ten minutes of the film, at least 15 people got up and walked out of the theater as the second song of the film immediately followed the first one. All I can say about that is... Sucks to be you! "Sweeney Todd" was bloody, violent, gory, and GOOD! The darkest and most disturbing musical of all time just made this horror film fanatic cringe and beg for more.
Director Tim Burton and actor Johnny Depp, seem to be the new Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro. Not only have they worked together on their last three films (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Corpse Bride, and Sweeney Todd), Burton and Depp have been a fan of each others work for a while, also working together in other films (Sleepy Hollow, Ed Wood, Edward Scissorhands). In their latest work, Burton directs Depp as Sweeney Todd (a.k.a. Benjamin Barker) who with the help of a young sailor Anthony Hope (Jamie Campbell Bower) returns to London after being falsely accused and sent away by Judge Turpin (Alan Rickman, Perfume: The Story of a Murderer, Love Actually, and all the Harry Potter's). In search of his wife and daughter that were left behind as he was forcefully taken away, Sweeney Todd never forgets his plan for revenge. During his search, he opens a barbershop above Mr.s Lovett's (Helena Bonham Carter, who is also a part of all three of the last Burton/Depp films) meat Pie shop where she sells the most disgusting, putrid, "worst pies in London." First to prove his worthiness as a barber, Sweeney finds a shaving counterpart to go up against and prove his artwork. This equal he encounters is Signor Adolfo Pirelli, played by the hilarious Sacha Baron Cohen (Ali-G, Borat). Now, with his skill noticed, and the help of Mrs. Lovett, Todd is ready to wreak revenge on all who have done him wrong... along with many others who can best be described as being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Also, the not so recognizable Timothy Spall (Vanilla Sky, Enchanted, The Last Samurai) does a wonderfully wicked job portraying Judge Turpin's grisly assistant Beadle Bamford.
It is rather difficult to critique a film that is a musical because not too many people are fans of the musical genre. I love all films... that are good! Let me rephrase, I love all genres of film. As long as the movie is good, I do not care in the least bit what kind of movie it is. However, for most the genre is important. If you are not a musical fan, do not see this movie! If you are not a horror fan, do not see this movie! If you are not a thriller fan, do not see this movie! If you are two out of three of the previously mentioned genres, you still might not want to see this movie. However, if you are a fan of cinema like I am, and you are in the mood to see a great movie, and you don't care if it's a musical, or how gruesome and violent it's going to be, then be prepared to enjoy "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street." In conclusion, I completely forgot to mention how unbelievably amazing Johnny Depp is as Sweeney Todd! Depp plays Todd to perfection.
Pat the Movie Critic gives "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street" ---- 3 1/2 Scoops.