I saw it in my dad’s video collection many years ago, but never got to watch it. The title always sounds enticing, as Helena Bonham Carter–she’s not pretty, but what an actress, a perfect personification of the Corpse Bride and match for the cranky and creative Tim Burton.

I can’t remember when I requested it from the library–must be several months ago. Given that the borrow period for DVD is only 7 days, it’s a pretty hot item.

It’s a pretty slow movie, boring at times, but the pace is perfect for the storyline and the atmosphere. These British films have a special cunningness and charm, with the ageless Maggie Smith and Judi Dench. It was Daniel Day-Lewis’ (then 28) break-out role, and certainly Carter’s (then only 19) as well. What careers are ahead of them!

The hilarious Reverend Mr. Beebe was played by Simon Callow, a good supporting actor in many movies. From what I’ve seen: Emanuel Schikaneder (the librettist of Die Zauberflöte) in Amadeus (his film debut), the wonderfully gay (in both senses) Gareth in Four Weddings and a Funeral, and Sir Edmund Tilney (Master of the Revels) in Shakespeare in Love.

And we’re pleasantly surprised to see Florence featured in many shots–the first half of the story all happened there. It’s a wonderful feeling, though banal, to see a landmark in a movie and think “yeah I’ve been there, it’s not that pretty”.