Sleepy hollow is a gothic so called Horror movie with a few mild laughs which to be honest weren’t very funny at all. Tim Burton (Director of Sweeney tod & Charlie and the chocolate factory) the director of this thrilling mystery has done a good job, but I don’t think this is his best movie as this film doesn’t show the best of his ability. Ichabod crane (Johnny Depp) is a constable from New York sent to sleepy hollow to investigate a series of ghoulish murders involving people’s heads being cut off.
On his arrival the towns’ people tell him that the murderer is no other than the headless horseman (played wonderfully by Christopher walken in one scene where we see him alive). Ichabod is very squeamish and doesn’t believe it but with the help of the wonderful Katrina Van Tassel (Christina ricci) who he then falls in love with and the young son of one of the victims, he uncovers some very interesting evidence that would suggest otherwise. This may sound promising but take if from me its not as good as it seems.
Johnny Depp (pirates of the Caribbean, Chocolat) who plays Ichabod crane does an amazing job in all his other movies but I don’t think that this is his best acting performance don’t get me wrong I think Johnny depp is amazing and without him in this film and it wouldn’t be anything worth celebrating. Johnny depp has a great talent for acting: he is funny, entertaining and quirky, though if you like Johnny depp I suggest you see this film! When the first 5 minutes of the film started I began to look forward to the rest of the movie as the opening sequence was rather awesome.
The close up of the hot wax melting created the impression of blood dripping which was the perfect twist for the beginning of the film. It sent shivers down my spine, but to top it of the twist was that it was actual hot wax sealing an important document. Burton then uses a tracking shot of the carriage wheels this really did give the impression of speed which was absolutely brilliant! He then uses another two fabulous camera shots and putting them next to each other was definitely the right choice; an absolutely terrifying long shot of the scarecrow really did give me a fright especially with the lightning in the background.
This shot is therefore then followed by a low angle shot of the same scarecrow! This is made even more intimidating and emphasis’s the scariness as he stares at the helpless driver! Towards the end of the opening sequence Burton uses another tracking shot this time of van garret running through a field making him look more vulnerable as it was from his point of view. In my opinion this opening is truly fantastic and is definitely worth a trip to the local cinema, but unfortunately this opening is much better than the rest of the film, which is appalling to be honest, so this is definitely a promise that this film just could not deliver!
Tim Burton is a fabulous director but in this movie he doesn’t show his best ability as he does in the rest of his movies (such as Charlie and the chocolate factory. ) For example the most awful part of this film was the use of blood, as it didn’t even look like blood it looked like ketchup and the only place we want to see ketchup is with our chips! Although the set was fantastic and Burton did an amazing job creating the ambience and the small freaky villages because to be honest that’s probably the best part about this film.
Danny Elfman provided excellent music; there’s a grand, sweeping orchestra, a haunting boy’s choir coupled with a demonic male choir. Clever orchestrations, strong themes, and an overall sense of playful inventiveness which in my opinion provides the perfect soundtrack for the creepy horror movie ‘sleepy hollow’. My favourite piece of Danny Elfman music in this movie is the bit where his music starts to play whilst there in the forest, this creates the perfect impression for the dark scary woods but however it manages to be creepy and quite humours at the same time, as you don’t know whether to laugh or be scared!
Music to match the dense fog that hangs over the town of Sleepy Hollow are fantastic especially with the Voices can be heard howling in distance. But to be honest perhaps his music is not as distinctive in his style as people had been hoping it would be. In conclusion sleepy hollow is quite entertaining for about an hour then after that you just want to turn it of. The only reason I would want to watch this film again is to see Johnny Depp but I wouldn’t even watch it again for that! With all respects to Burton this is his worst film ever and isn’t worth your money. The special effects are good but nothing special the same goes to the acting.
There are numerous scenes of heads rolling off but none of them (not even one! ) are really gory enough to be disturbing. Another thing the plot is far too confusing and drags the film down instead of making it more interesting like any other decent movie of Burton. Sleepy hollow is just lacking in every ingredient in which you need to make a movie. I strongly advise you not to see this film as it have already wasted a good 1hour and 45 minutes of my life and you wouldn’t want that to happen to you right? Finally in my opinion Sleepy Hollow is exactly like its title: sleepy and hollow.