The Nightmare Before Christmas Review

Nightmare Before Christmas Review by Tim Burton

The Nightmare Before Christmas Review by Tim Burton

  • IMDB – 8.0 | Rotten Tomatoes – 94%
  • Rated PG
  • 76 minutes
  • Released – October 29th, 1993
  • Directed By: Henry Selick

Our Thoughts

Over twenty years have passed since Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas made its first appearance on the big screen, yet today’s young generation can still feel the ripples of it’s success.

Many teens and young adults who haven’t even seen the movie are exposed to its characters every year during both Christmas and Halloween or in recent years through Capcom’s famous video game series Kingdom Hearts.

The Nightmare Before Christmas is about Jack Skellington, the Pumpkin King of Halloween Town. The audience follows Jack as he becomes weary of the same holiday routine year after year and searches for something new. He stumbles upon Christmas Town, becomes inspired by the holiday, and decides to make his own Christmas.

What makes this movie a classic is that there are no other movies like it. Based on the poem by Tim Burton and directed by Henry Selick, no other movie has shown how powerful the spirits of America’s two favorite holidays have become in recent decades. This movie encompasses the beautiful blend of American culture  the dueling grotesque nature of the Halloween verses the delicate and splendid nature of Christmas.

I personally enjoy the messages of this movie to children which include to always stay true to yourself and there is always time to set right what you did wrong. That last moral Jack himself literally sings. Lastly, the romance of the movie was a little more realistic then the normal Disney movie. Sally finds herself almost overshadowed by Jacks ambitions, like many people do today with their significant other, and only through solving his mistakes does he realize whats truly important in the end and that is each other.

Besides the plot, the animation quality, for its time, is and always will be remarkable. With a 24 frames per second, the Disney standard since Snow White, the claymation motion is fluid and tries to hammer every last detail. Blinking eyes of the characters alone took three frames and over 400 heads of Jack were used to create his expressions. This claymation master piece would  have taken an entire week just to create one minute of film. Then you add Danny Elfman’s musical talent, which he didn’t have a script to work , and you have the amazing creation of The Nightmare Before Christmas. I always like to applaud films that put more effort into making their creation.

My only sorrow about this film is that its only 76 minutes long. Although Disney wanted to do a sequel, in CGI (computer generated imagery), Tim Burton insisted the movie keep its “purity” and I agree with him. Even if I would love to watch more adventures of Jack Skellington and Halloween Town, I don’t want the story or characters to be lower standard than the original, not pointing fingers at Mulan II. Plus, if I was in charge of making the sequel it would be claymation, not CGI.

Overall this movie can be enjoyed by most people, limited only to kids under the age of five, and has an amazing story yet simple story to tell. This movie has not only influenced who I am but has touched the hearts of many and has definitely earned its placed as a Disney classic.

The Nightmare Before Christmas Movie Trailer