Shake Up the Eternal Trio
Review by Richard Buxton
It’s surely safe to now say that the TIM BURTON-JOHNNY DEPP collaborations are beginning to run on fumes as DARK SHADOWS brings the two together yet again. Naturally, such a combination can only mean one thing musically, and that is the return of DANNY ELFMAN. What was once a trio that inspired awe and intrigue has now arguably become a tired exercise through the motions. ELFMAN’S scores for BURTON films have generally been solid, but bar an exception or two have recently failed to ignite anything but murmurs of acknowledgement. Does DARK SHADOWS, a movie adaptation of the 60’s TV show, venture beyond the tried, tried, and retried formula? Or does a spark of originality lurk in the dark?
Initial impressions suggest that DARK SHADOWS is another competent, but ultimately formulaic ELFMAN score. Further listens only reassert such assumptions, as ELFMAN simply ticks all the boxes required for a gothically inspired score such as this. All the elements required for a standard TIM BURTON score are present and ultimately result in just another standard TIM BURTON soundscape. That’s not to say that DARK SHADOWS is without its own individual merits however.
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