In the world of cinema, we have had many eccentric people take us through their minds through their movies. From showing us their style of story telling, music, looks, artistic style, and many more, they have transcended us into a new world that we will probably never see in real life. If there’s one person who was done that over the last 30 years, it’s Tim Burton. Whether you love him or hate him, you have to admit that his dark, atmospheric style mixed with goofy humor has made some classic movies and TV shows that we still praise to this very day.

In honor of his reboot to his first short movie Frankenweenie coming out this October, Old School Lane is going to review every single Tim Burton movie that he has released up to that point. You’ll hear that review on the new Frankenweenie on Timdiana’s Something Cinematic. Let’s not waste any time. Let’s get to it. Let’s start with two of his first shorts: Vincent and Frankenweenie. Let’s begin with the 1982 short Vincent. 

The story begins simply about a young boy named Vincent Malloy who wishes to be like his idol Vincent Price. The short is narrated by Prince himself spoken like a Dr. Seuss rhyme. It shows dark creepy atmospheric scenes like spiders, bats, dipping his aunt in boiling wax, and shadows in almost every scene. His mother urges him to go outside and play like a good normal boy, but he continues to dream that he is Vincent Price.

It only lasts for 6 minutes, but overall, it’s a very nice short. It truly captures the classic style that Tim Burton will be known for. This short is available to see online or as an extra on The Nightmare Before Christmas DVD menu.

The next project that Burton created is the 1984 short Frankenweenie.

The movie is about a young boy named Victor Frankenstein who has a love for making movies with his 8mm camera. While showing off his latest movie to his family, he’s greeted by the star of his movie, his beloved dog Sparky.

Victor loves Sparky more than anything in the world. Unfortunately, after playing ball with him, Sparky runs into the road and gets hit by a car. Victor gets really upset about the death of his dog that he doesn’t stop thinking about him. In science class, his teacher shows an experiment about a dead frog moving by using electricity. Victor gets the idea of resurrecting Sparky using the power of electricity.


At first it didn’t work, but then, Sparky wakes up and licks Victor in the face after crashing down on the floor. The experient worked successfully.

With his dog revived, Victor has to keep Sparky a secret from everyone. However, Sparky wandered out outside where he was seeing by the neighbors next door. They thought that Sparky was a large monster on the verge of attacking them, which puts them in paralyzing fear.

Eventually, Victor’s parents find out about Sparky and urges him to tell the neighbors about it. Victor hesitates at first, but finally agrees. When the neighbors see Sparky, they scream in fear and chase him into a giant windmill of an abandoned golf course. Victor goes after Sparky and calms him down from the angry mob. The neigbors then burn down the giant windmill not knowing that Victor was in it.

Victor, unable to escape due to the heavy smoke, collaspes and faints. Sparky saves Victor’s life in exchange of his own by bringing him out of the windmill in time before it collapses. The neighbors see Sparky’s bravery and help Victor revive Sparky again. Using the electricity from their cars, they attached jump cables to Sparky bringing him back to live. The movie ends with Sparky meeting with a female dog.

Overall, this is a really nice short. It’s cute, creative, and has a spooky atmosphere. Frankenweenie was originally going to be debuted alongside the rerelease of Pinocchio, but Disney withdrew it due to their opinion of it being too dark and scary for kids. With that in mind, Tim Burton was fired from Disney. However, Frankenweenie would eventually be released on VHS in 1994 after Burton’s amazing success with his movies, but more on those later. If you haven’t seen this, check it out sometime.

Tune in next time as we take a look into Burton’s first directional feature film Pee-wee’s Big Adventure.

Hope that we see you around Old School Lane. Take care.


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