DARK SHADOWS (WB, 2012) D: Tim Burton, w/ Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer. Rating: NN; Blu-ray package: NNN Rating: NN
Once again, an old TV show hits the big screen with big stars, lavish production and not much fun.
After 200 years sealed in a coffin, reluctant vampire Barnabas Collins (Johnny Depp) escapes and sets about restoring wealth and power to the remnants of his once-great family and falling in love with the reincarnation of his true love (Bella Heathcote). He's opposed by Angelique (Eva Green), the witch who boxed him up in the first place.
All this - and there's more - is easily enough for an evening of lunatic gothic grandeur, and visually Burton supplies plenty. Then he undercuts it with fish-out-of-water jokes that poke fun at Collins. Not very funny and not a good way to treat your hero.
Depp's impossibly arch mannerisms and sonorous line delivery are funny, though, and the rest of the cast, notably Michelle Pfeiffer, the Collins matriarch, and Helena Bonham Carter, a drunk psychiatrist, seem to be enjoying themselves in a different movie.
The making-of docs and picture-in-picture material are both worth watching. In the former, Depp's take on creating the character stands out; the latter covers the genesis of the project and shows snippets of the original 1966-71 soap opera.
EXTRAS Nine making-of docs, picture-in-picture making-of docs, deleted scenes. English, French, Spanish, Portuguese audio and subtitles.