NOTE: This is the same review as done on the
Nightmare Before Christmas"
DVD. Picture and sound quality notes have been added.
How many times has "The Nightmare Before Christmas" been re-released on a home video format? I've lost count. I'm not complaining, because this film has become a perennial classic and it's always been a favorite of mine.
Surprisingly enough, "Nightmare" didn't do that great at the box office when it was released in 1993. Disney wasn't sure whether to release it under their Walt Disney Pictures label, or under their more adult label, Touchstone Pictures. It was released under Touchstone because it was felt that the scary imagery might frighten children. Nothing could've been further from the truth, and the film eventually won over adults and children over the years.
Jack Skellington, the Pumpkin King of Halloween Town, grows tired of doing the same Halloween celebrations every year. During a walk in the woods, he comes to a holiday tree for Christmas. He falls in and finds himself in the world of Santa Claus. Jack comes up with a scheme to bring Christmas to Halloween Town, and as a result, finds himself over his head.
Tim Burton's Gothic touch is all over this film, but credit is due to director Henry Selick and his talented crew of stop-motion animators. The animation is simply superb. Every little detail of how each character moves and acts gives "Nightmare" human emotion. Jack is one of the more genius creations to come out of Burton's creative mind. Like any great character, he yearns for something more, something different. As much as we enjoy the playful horrors of Halloween Town, Jack's visit to Christmas Town is a remarkable eye opener. Burton used his childhood fascination with the holiday season with creative abandon here. Most kids I know love Halloween and love Christmas, and Burton's story gives us that exciting feeling of the joys of each holiday.
There's not much else to say about "Nightmare," other than it's great entertainment. I'm sure that most people have seen it at least once by now. Is it worth buying this latest edition? Yes! This Blu-ray edition is a spectacular upgrade in both picture and sound quality. The picture is natural and sharp without being overly "digitally remastered." The Dolby TrueHD 7.1 soundtrack is excellent, though I'm surprised that Disney didn't supply an uncompressed soundtrack option. Danny Elfman's score comes through nice and pretty.
It's still too early to celebrate Halloween, and it's especially early to celebrate Christmas. But it's not too early to get a sneak peek at this classic film. Plus the new cover is pretty neat.
Special thanks to Click Communications
Photos: © WDSHE. All rights reserved.
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