Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland opens today. I do plan to see it and I will post a review. Until then, in honor of one of my favorite directors, I offer you my list of top 5 Burton films and the reasons they’re so great (in no particular order).
Macabre madness in a comedy where the phenomenal Michael Keaton (as Beetlejuice) steals the show from a very talented cast including: Catherine O’Hara, Jeffrey Jones, Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis. Beetle Juice is delicious mix of weirdness and laughs. A true cult classic.
Face it, comic based movies were a joke before 1989’s Batman. Burton ushered in a whole new wave of what comic based films could aspire to. Keaton proved to the world he was worthy of the cape. Nicholson turned in the performance of his career. Bassinger was gorgeous.
Probably Burton’s most zany, yet a compelling drama at the same time. Depp and Landau were wonderful together. Is it the truth? Who knows, who cares? It’s a truly a celebration of what made Wood so captivating as the “worst director of all time.”
Sublimely eccentric fable about a boy with scissors for hands who falls for a girl. Laughs and tears ensue with a heartfelt bittersweet ending. Really? Could anyone else but Burton make this film?
The Nightmare Before Christmas
Okay, okay, yes technically it isn’t a Burton film but he created the characters, wrote the story and served as executive producer. Nevertheless TNBC it quintessential Burton. Filled with quirky, funny and lovable characters (who aren’t always what they seem on the outside), great music and wonderfully designed sets in a world full scares and charm and even a lesson to be learned. Whats not to love?
Agree? Disagree? Hit me back in the comments.
Traitor starring Don Cheadle and Guy Pearce was released in August 2008. It had a short box office life which is an unfortunate thing. The central plot revolves around terrorism and the main character is Muslim, which I fear may have been a turn off for a lot of people. It probably wasn’t helped by the trailers that sold it as a sort of “Bourne” style action film which it isn’t. The Bourne films rely heavily on action and Traitor is much more of a character driven and “plot unraveling” type story with action scenes interspersed as needed by the narrative.
The Netflix Blurb:
“Tenacious FBI agent Roy Clayton (Guy Pearce) is assigned to pursue Samir Horn (Don Cheadle), an ex-Special Ops soldier who betrayed his country and joined the Al Nathir terrorist organization. But as he closes in, Clayton begins to second-guess Horn’s true intentions. Jeff Daniels and Neal McDonough co-star in this intelligent and exciting spy thriller that also examines the beliefs and motivations behind terrorism.”
I enjoyed Traitor quite a lot. It is an intense build type of film, so if you’re expecting wall to wall action don’t. The characters really drive the story here. Actor Said Taghmaoui, in a supporting role as Omar, Cheadle’s sort of “terrorist mentor”, turns an a very convincing role that surprisingly made the plight of Jihadists almost seem justifiable. Cheadle is also very solid as I’ve pretty much come to expect from him. The story twists and turns as you’re left guessing and second guessing his loyalties. Is he really a traitor? If so to whom?
Bottom Line: If you enjoy plot driven flim’s with a mix of espionage, thriller, ever-present intensity and a bit of action you should check out Traitor. Rated PG-13 available on: Blu ray, DVD and Netflix Watch Instantly.