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The Movie “Nightmare Before Christmas” Essay

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Updated: May 4th, 2021

Biography Henry Selick the director of ‘Nightmare before Christmas’

Henry Selick is the director of the movie, ‘Nightmare before Christmas.’ Selick was born in November, 1952 at Glen Ridge, New Jersey. His educational background includes a degree in science and arts at Rutgers and Syracuse University. Notably, his early childhood life was influenced by passion for animated movies and storytelling. He later enrolled to study animation at Cal Arts College which later shaped his carrier in film production as an artist and character designer. Immediately he cleared his studies, Seleck took a step of faith to pursue his carrier; he first joined Walt Disney Studios. It is upon this time that he met Tim Burton and others. As a student at Cal Arts College, he produced films such as: ‘Phases and Tube Tales’, ‘Nightmare before Christmas’ as well ‘James and the Giant’, the ‘Seepage’, and ‘Twice upon a Time’.

Review of Tim Burton masterpiece, ‘The Nightmare before Christmas’ by Levi Leland Jan, 13th 2009

The Nightmare before Christmas” is produced by Tim Burton. It is a story about a Halloween King named Jack Skellington (Thompson 8). Jack became tired of the same old routine for Halloween. One night, Jack Skellington found himself at a door in a Christmas town. After this visit, his desire was to turn the town into a center for Christmas wonderland. The thought of bringing Christmas to the world quickly overshadowed him. After Sandy Clause’s kidnap, he believed it could be possible to bring Christmas to the world alone. However, despite trying to look relevant, he turned the Christmas Holiday into despite his dreams. Christmas party quickly turned into a Halloween Nightmare.

This is one of my classical Claymation films. However, the film lacks well thought-out stop motion animation. This leaves the audience whose initial interest in animation perplexed due to the director mixes of styles (Steiff 28). Tim Burton is well renowned for such Claymation movies such as ’Corpse Bride’, ‘Vincent’ and ‘Giant Peach’. Similar characters are the key players in this movie ‘The Nightmare before Christmas’. The use of Claymation is a kind of animation that employs the use of stop motion photography. Animation is common in stop motion and taking pictorial scenes in motion while camera is standstill.

Claymation is a form of animation that uses stop-motion photography to bring to life clay figures sculpted by artists. Animation also requires the use of movie software that assists to edit and download the digital pictures to a computer. In the process, Burton is capable of producing the best animation characters. These techniques are time consuming and sometimes frustrating because of the complexity that comes with them. Characters are built, exactly molded by hand, out from such animations if impossible human movements can be gathered and displayed on the screen (Weis and Belton 361). The film by Tim Burton is entertaining and contains well-crafted ideas that leave the audience guessing every moment of what is to be next in the play. It is also an inspiration movie with Soft music and well designed voice-over’s.

The movie, ‘Nightmare before Christmas’ by Tim Burton begins with a soft classical music. Drum bits, piano and orchestra sounds. This starts from the opening scenes. Burton uses sounds to capture the audience attention. Immediately, the audience sees the narrator is brought to the fore telling his story but the movements and rhythm are aligned to music. Tim Burton is unique in his presentation, he uses animation to shift and create tension and makes the audience wonder to what extend the actors are real and full with mystery. Music as well has been used to create tension and to alert the audience on what they expect next. Throughout the cast period, different music sounds have been artistically chosen during the play creating different moods and making the audience glued in waiting to what may happen next.

Tim Burton ‘Nightmare before Christmas’ has used a lot of shadows. The film producer is creating different mood with these shadows. The shadows reflect the dull moments; the celebration times are given bright lights. He has also used the moonlights.

This being the main source of light for giving the audience another kind of theme in the movie ‘a creepy mood’ these are for graveyard scenes. The camerawork used gives a clear scene in Halloween town. Tim Burton’s characters are often connected to a song when they introduce themselves in the story line. In the use of mise en scene, Tim has not used real characters; he has adopted the style of animation skinny dull looking graveyard is exposed to the audience. In the scene, there are very fat or thin characters that appear like monsters. However, the choice of black cats in animation is a common experience with Tim in his shows and ‘Nightmare before Christmas’ is no exception. The black cats are used as pets and at the same time they represent the dark sad of the environment Tim is exposing to the audience.

Works Cited

Steiff, Josef. The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Independent Filmmaking. New York: Alpha Books, 2005. Print.

Thompson, Frank T. “Tim Burton’s, ‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’: The Film; the Art.” The Vision, 1993. Print.

Weis, Elisabeth, and John Belton. Film Sound: Theory and Practice. Columbia: Columbia University Press, 1985. Print.

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