Opening this Friday from director/writer Tim Burton and Disney comes a story for the haunted holidays with FRAKENWEENIE.
This film tells the story of Victor Frankenstein (voiced by Charlie Tahan) and his beloved dog Sparky. Victor loves science and when new teacher Mr. Rzykruski (Martin Landau) challenges the students during a science fair, the students are excited. During school Sparky keeps busy by visiting Elsa Van Helsing’s (Winona Ryder) poodle.
As Victor works on his project, an accident happens to Sparky and he is devastated. Mom (Catherine O’Hara) and Dad (Martin Short) truly do wish they could console their son. It is Mr. Rzykruski that gives Victor the idea to reanimate Sparky.
That’s when his classmates including Edgar E. Gore (Atticus Shafer), Bob (Robert Capron), and Toshiaki (James Hiroyuki Liao) and Nassor (Martin Short) take it upon themselves to do whatever it takes to win the science fair with Victor’s idea.
When the town of New Holland starts to fall apart, it is Victor and Sparky to the rescue to set it all right again!
FINAL WORD: Tahan voices Victor extremely well. There is such devotion love and devotion for Sparky and it comes through with Tahan’s voice. Its good to hear Landau as Mr. Rzykruski playing a role that offer’s Victor’s character so much in the way of believing in himself.
O’Hara as Mom is a little book obsessed but also very supportive of Victor. Short as Dad wants his son to be something he’s not but, like all parents, learns to accept Victor for who he is. Ryder as the gal next door is just as dark as Victor.
Victor’s classmates are hilarious in a dark way. Shafer as Edgar E. Gore steals the show with his goofiness. The competition between Capron’s Bob and Liao’s Toshiaki brings a few laughs. Short gets to play another role as Nassor, the most Frankenstein looking character who has nothing to do with Frankenstein! Weird girl and her weird cat offer some giggles as well.
Other cast include: Tom Kenny as New Holland townsfolk, Conchata Ferrell as Bob’s Mom, Dee Bradley Baker as Persephone van Helsing, Jeff Bennett as the Sea Monkey, and Frank Welker as Sparky Frankenstein.
TUBS OF POPCORN: I give FRANKENWEENIE three tubs of popcorn out of five. It is a good story of friendship between a boy and his very sweet and very funny dog. The idea of pushing science as something to be felt in the heart is a message I am quite sure teachers will enjoy. The creatures are very creative and funny. The black and white adds a spooky element that is actually very well done geared toward the story.
The problems, and there are a couple, the 3D is truly more annoying with fuzzy spots and lack of depth in the picture. The topic seemed more geared toward an adult audience than children who were fidgeting throughout the entire film. The kiddies seemed to miss the jokes or just didn’t get them.
The film itself is a remake of a short film by Tim Burton called FRANKENWEENIE over twenty-eight years ago. Another piece of trivia about the film is that Burton brings Catherine O’Hara and Winona Ryder back together since working on BEETLEJUICE. For Ryder, this is the third time working with Burton and the last time was EDWARD SCISSORHANDS.
In the end – a boy’s best friend has a spark of his own!