The Sweet Bond Between a Boy and His Dog
Starring: The Voices of Winona Ryder,
Catherine O’Hare, Martin
Landau, Charlie Tahan,
Christopher Lee, Atticus
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy
Audience: Older children to adults
Runtime: 87 minutes
Distributor: Walt Disney Pictures/Walt
Director: Tim Burton
Producer: Tim Burton, Allison Abbate
Writer: John August, Leonard Ripps
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Quality: * * * * Acceptability: +1
MPAA RATING: PG
RELEASE: October 5, 2012
TIME: 87 minutes
STARRING: The Voices of Winona Ryder, Catherine O’Hare, Martin Landau, Charlie Tahan, Christopher Lee, Atticus Shaffer
DIRECTOR: Tim Burton
PRODUCERS: Tim Burton, Allison Abbate
WRITER: John August, Leonard Ripps
BASED ON THE NOVEL/PLAY BY: N/A
DISTRIBUTOR: Walt Disney Pictures/Walt Disney Company
CONTENT: (BBB, H, V, M) Very strong moral worldview about good versus evil with an example of very supportive parents, slight humanist elements stressing science but movie also notes science can be used in a bad way; no obscenities, no profanities; large animals attack a town; no sex scenes but married couple kisses; no nudity; no drinking; no smoking; and, a girl mentions an “omen” about one character accomplishing big things.
INTENDED AUDIENCE: Older children to adults
REVIEWER: Evy Baehr
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Victor’s best friend is Sparky, his sweet dog. Doing everything together, Victor and Sparky are never apart. One day, when Victor is playing a baseball game, Sparky goes to catch the ball and is hit by a car and dies. Absolutely devastated, Victor persists with life but not with the same attitude. Until one day, Victor’s excitable science teacher inspires the group to do a science project for the science fair.
Victor is invigorated and immediately starts to think of things he can do for the science fair. Mr. Rzykruski, the Russian science teacher, shows the group that electricity will still run through a dead animal. Amazed, Victor runs back to his house and starts to set up shop so he can try to electrify Sparky back to life.
With an incredible amount of electricity, Sparky is sparked back to life. Sparky has just the same energy and life as before, and Victor has found his science project. Even though Victor ties Sparky up in the attic so no one sees him, Sparky gets out and Victor’s classmate, Edgar, sees Sparky. Edgar approaches Victor, saying he will tell the secret of Sparky if Victor doesn’t show him how to bring back his fish so he can win the science project. Victor decides to show Edgar, but the fish turns out invisible and scary. Days pass, and the fish ends up dying, but Edgar has already shown many of the other classmates, who then want to steal the project from Victor in order to win.
A huge catastrophe occurs when the other science classmates decide to do the experiment on their dead animals, and the animals turn out to be evil. With the help of Sparky, Victor has to save the day.
FRANKENWEENIE has a moral worldview where Victor is told that things must be done for the good and with love rather than for bad. Though this is the case, there is a strong emphasis in science, but there are examples of using science in a negative way. Also, one of Victor’s classmates tells him there is an “omen” about Victor that big things will happen.
FRANKENWEENIE is done in incredible stop animation. The movie is done in great detail in a beautiful manner. Some of the aesthetic may be a little scary for very young children. A loving relationship between a boy and his dog will make the audience tear up, but at the same time the audience will laugh at the quirky elements Tim Burton adds. Tim Burton has worked on this project for decades, first creating a short for it in 1984. This short was the first thing he ever did for Disney. Overall, FRANKENWEENIE is exceptionally well made and directed. It’s also very funny.
FRANKENWEENIE has a strong moral worldview. Victor is told that things must be done for the good and with love. The movie stresses science, but there are examples of using science in a negative way. FRANKENWEENIE has incredible stop animation, with a beautiful attention to detail. Some images may be a little scary for very young children. The relationship between Victor and Sparky will make viewers tear up, and they will laugh at the quirky elements. Overall, FRANKENWEENIE is exceptionally well made and directed.