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There Is No Place Like London

2207 words - 9 pages

In Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007), Benjamin Barker (Johnny Depp) (aka Sweeney Todd) has all that he wants, which is a wife Lucy (Laura Michelle Kelly) and a daughter Johanna (Jayne Wisener). The antagonist Judge Turpin (Alan Rickman) takes a liking to Benjamin’s wife and he accuses Barker of a crime that he did not commit. Fifteen years later, Benjamin Barker adopts a new identity and vows to seek vengeance against the people that hurt him the most. The vengeance starts when he befriends a poor pie owner Ms. Lovett (Helena Bonham Carter), who uses the human bodies that Sweeney kills for meat pies, which eventually leads to the demise of Ms. Lovett of being thrown into the pie oven and Sweeney Todd by having his throat slashed.
To understand Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, the viewer must first understand its creator who is Tim Burton. Burton, who is known for films that contain dark and macabre themes makes the viewer think about film in a more distinct way. Tim Burton is known to be a director that makes non-statitc films, which means that its lessons are applicable today. He purposely does this so it would be hard to justify his films into one specific category. Sweeney Todd is a representation of the applying his views on film and making it relevant to the modern day.Tim Burton uses dark and macabre imagery by the song “There is no place like London: and the death of Sweeney Todd to help the viewer understand how 18th century ideas can be applied to the modern day. He uses London as a representation to complement these two particular events and its outcomes in both of these two particular scenes.
Before one explores Sweeney Todd, it is also imperative that the viewer understands Tim Burton’s style and his approach to film. A comparison to help the reader understand is through Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street in relation to its Broadway counterpart. Patrick Brian Riley’s ""it's Man Devouring Man, My Dear": Adapting Sweeney Todd for the Screen” helps the viewer understand the contrast and provides the reader with insight on the minor differences in both Sweeney Todd in film version, as well as in the Broadway version . As Riley notes, “The Ballad of Sweeney Todd”, which opens and closes the show and resurfaces periodically as a transitional device between scenes. In Burtons version, the ballad is relegated, sans lyrics, to the background score. As a result, there is no direct address, and only the principal characters sing, often in hushed, "indoor" voices that blend almost seamlessly with the spoken dialogue.”(Man). These two contrast of the same song help the reader understand of why Burton’s adaptation of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street makes it unique. It is that Burton challenges the established movie making elements of Hollywood by making them his creation and from what he sees. This article clearly demonstrates how Burton through his creativity is able to help the...

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