Oh, Tim Burton. Timmy. Tim Bo. What happened, man? Once one of the great off-kilter auteurs playing in the studio sandbox, now reduced to cinematic adverts for Hot Topic handbags. If only he could return to his roots, one-time fans (and critics) have bemoaned. If only he could make something as charmingly kooky and hauntingly heartfelt as, say, Edward Scissorhands. Here’s the thing: he did. And most of us didn’t see it. A critically acclaimed financial flop, Frankenweenie could not have been more of a return to roots. Based on the 1984 live-action short film that got him his first feature gig with Pee-Wee, this feature length adaptation embodies all of the genuine oddball zest that made his early outings so exciting. Gorgeously rendered in black and white stop-motion, this passion project is a love letter to the monster movies that first sparked his love of cinema. Victor, the budding mad scientist/filmmaker, is a clear stand-in for a tiny Tim, making this feel all the more so his most personal film. Join ABD as we celebrate this wonderful resurrection of Tim Burton of old; a dearth of ticket sales may have taken a torch to its proverbial windmill, but tonight we’ll have a chance to give his creation life, as it so rightly deserves!

Dir. Tim Burton, 2012, 35mm, 87 min.