Dear White People
You could make a (film geek) party game out of guessing director Justin Simien's influences, but his vision seems to spring directly from what's up…
"[Director Tim Burton] saw the picture as an homage to old Universal horror flicks ('Frankenstein,' 'The Black Cat'), creepy silent-film melodramas (any number of Lon Chaney spine-tinglers), and Hammer horror films (pulpy fare from the '50s and '60s). Both Burton and Depp say there are major nods to Peter Lorre's 'Mad Love' performance in Sweeney. Oh, and that shock of white in Depp's hair? A sign of Todd's trauma — and possibly a nod to Humphrey Bogart's skunk stripe in his lone horror picture, 'The Return of Dr. X.,' a Burton favorite. (Plus Depp says he's got a nephew with a white streak.)" -- Entertainment Weekly (November 9, 2007)
"Mr. Depp’s Sweeney isn’t a regular guy either. With a Susan Sontag patch of white streaking his pompadour, ghostly skin and distraught eyes, this Sweeney is both wretched and mad." -- The New York Times (November 4, 2007)
Humphrey Bogart in "The Return of Dr. X" looks more like Edward Scissorhands to me. It's the lips.
Bulletin: Johnny Depp plays the title role in a Tim Burton film version of Stephen Sondheim's "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street" -- and he's not a regular guy! In fact, he's "both wretched and mad," which (from the way the Times reports it) must be an entirely new take on the character. The Demon Barber, that is. Bet Sondheim wishes he'd thought of that.
But what of that mysterious shock of white hair that leaves the Times and EW writers stretching for an antecedent? Bogart in "Dr. X"? Sure, OK. Susan Sontag? Somebody needs to get out of New York more often. Hey, why not JoBeth Williams in the latter part of "Poltergeist"?
The late Susan Sontag, The Demonized Intellectual of 9/11.
You know there's a pretty obvious one that a fan of James Whale's "Frankenstein" and its sequel could not help but recognize, if only because it's the most famous streak of white hair in all of movie history...
(All will be revealed after the jump...)
Got any more? Send in the crowns...
This message came to me from a reader named Peter Svensland. He and a fr...
An appreciation of "1941" and interview with Bob Gale.
A review of Paul Thomas Anderson's "Inherent Vice" from the 2014 New York Film Festival.
An interview with Cary Elwes about "The Princess Bride."