Johnny Depp has had an illustrious career in Hollywood with several memorable roles that have cemented his legacy as a prolific actor. Some of his best films are also streaming on Netflix and can be viewed right now.
However, in January 2022, the streaming giant added one of his most hated and criticised films to their shelves. Surprisingly enough, the film has begun topping Netflix charts despite its poor reception and low critic approval.
Ranking sixth on the list of most popular films on Netflix, Tim Burton’s 2012 horror comedy Dark Shadows was adapted from an eponymous gothic soap opera.
Although it had a star-studded ensemble cast, namely Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Michelle Pfeiffer, Eva Green, Jonny Lee Miller and more, it performed poorly at the box office due to its lackadaisical plot and lack of character development, despite the umpteen quirks and goofs.
Set in the 1700s, the young and wealthy Barnabas Collins leaves the comfort of his grandiose Collinwood Manor home to set sail towards America from Liverpool. In reality, he is trying to escape an old curse that plagues his family. Barnabas is a womaniser and lives a thrifty life till he breaks the heart of a woman named Angelique Bouchard who is a vengeful witch. She curses him into oblivion, turning him into a vampire and burying him alive where he rests for nearly two centuries before remerging again.
He returns to his manor in 1972 to find the ruinous condition of the once beautiful mansion. His dysfunctional and chaotic descendants are no better and each nurse their own dreadful secrets that will most likely be solved by a live-in psychiatrist according to the matriarch.
Tim Burton, who is celebrated for being the master of macabre horror, has collaborated with Depp on various other more successful occasions. However, Dark Shadows, despite the consistent rhythm of amusement, humour and eeriness, somehow fails to make a mark.
While the filmmaker tries to find his voice, the wide range of characters and the bumpy narrative perhaps confuses him and compels him to create this muddled mess. While Depp is brilliant as Barnabas Collins, the rest of the film is pretty terrible and mundane.
Watch the trailer for Dark Shadows below: