Wide Reading 4: The Night Before Christmas. Directed by Henry Selick. Produced by Tim Burton

The Night Before Christmas directed by Henry Selick and produced by Tim Burton, is a fantastic film about Jack Skellington who lives and as well as The Pumpkin King – taking a lot of tops from German Expressionism with the set design –  who wonders through a portal to Christmas Town and decides to celebrate the holiday, with some horrible and comical consequences. 

The main setting in the film is Halloween Town which is dark and gloomy. The town is made out of stone mostly, has tall towers, crooked gates and fences with pointed tips, and it was looks like a town hall, there are six deformed and angled pillars. The colours in the town are very dark accept for the colours which are considered ( found at the right shade of the colour) a ‘halloween colour. Everything in the town is also dead all of the trees and plants are dead. All of the clothing worn by the monsters are darker colours and sometimes ripped and torn, and stripped. The sky is very dark and full of clouds. These are all well known elements of gothic fiction elements, Selick and Burton but their own twist onto it to make it more kid-like and more appealing to children, but still making really creepy.  

The music style used in the film is very well-known it is staccato, and has the string instruments played in A minor. Minor chords are used in gothic film because if they are played right they sound ver gothic like as seen in this film and other gothic film. Along with the instrumental music there is also singing, because this is a musical the singing music – when singing in groups – there are two voices a deep voice and a really high, giving the songs dynamics and levels.This is a well used tool in gothic fiction film, they use minor keys because it makes that unpleasant sound, and makes everything sound rather evil like and scary.  

“Imagine Rankin-Bass Productions, like that mandatory annual great Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, hijacked by macabre sensibilities and a devilish flare for the grim (and the Grimm). All those innocent characters are suddenly twisted and torn apart, and then reassembled with skeleton frames, sewn with Frankenstein-like stitches, sporting wart-ridden noses and a deep hunger for blood. And yet, they remain sweet and loveable, even in their ghoulish and morbid form. Tim Burton conceived such an idea in 1993 with The Nightmare Before Christmas, the stop-motion animation picture that continues its cult fandom and box-office successes to this day, by drawing inspiration from everyone’s favorite yearly holiday television specials… Though initially envisaged as a TV special in the realm of his inspiration, Burton teamed with former Disney animator Henry Selick and together developed his original story ideas into a feature.” Is what Brian Eggert in October the 21st, 2008 said about the Nightmare Before Christmas, and I totally agree with him The Night Before Christmas is a wonderful horror fantasy movie that is filled with exitement and adventure.

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