Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 05 March 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines Tim Burton’s Sweeney Todd, a film adaptation of Stephen Sondheim’s award-winning musical thriller. In direct opposition to Sondheim’s opinion that this is the best, most filmic film version of a stage musical ever made it argues that Burton’s powerful deployment of the visual possibilities of cinemaalters the grand guignol of the stage musical with its direct address to the audience, to create a more attractive and conventional view of the two psychologically introspective protagonists who fail to evoke the grotesque and demonic force of their more convincingly melodramatic stage counterparts. By analysing Burton’s exploitation of the screen presence of Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham-Carter, the chapteridentifies the contradictions resulting from the director’s attempt to position the film within the genre of such classic screen thrillers as Psycho.

Keywords: Tim Burton, Sweeney Todd, Film, Stephen Sondheim, Musical, Benjamin Barker, Johnny Depp, Voice, Psycho

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.