TIM BURTON: THE ICONIC FILMMAKER AND HIS WORK
Not sleepy, but a bit hollow
released OUT NOW! 176 pages | Hardback
Author Ian Nathan
Does being a fan of something make you less critical of it, or more? It’s a pertinent question where this book is concerned. A lavishly presented survey of Tim Burton’s CV, it features hundreds of colour photographs, and feels very much designed as a gift for the Burton fan in your life. Some of the images are oddly chosen – what value does the poster for Superman: The Movie add? – but mostly, it looks splendid.
Given a limited wordcount (more than half the book is pictures), Ian Nathan crams in a lot as he rattles through Burton’s career. However, the tone is often too gushing, too eager to laud Burton’s genius. Maybe some fans want this – but being a fan also means you’ve thought about the subject a lot, and the book could use a more considered approach. In a way, it underrates Burton: he has glaring shortcomings, which even he doesn’t deny, but which this book barely addresses. The fact he’s become a leading filmmaker in spite of this is the real testament to him: you have to take his flaws, because what else he offers is unique. Eddie Robson
Burton was at CalArts with Pixar’s John Lasseter – a connection which got Frankenweenie greenlit.