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In which ways does Tim Burton use a mixture of genres in "Edward Scissorhands" to present the conflict between Edward and Society?

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Introduction

In which ways does Tim Burton use a mixture of genres in "Edward Scissorhands" to present the conflict between Edward and Society? Edward Scissorhands, directed by Tim Burton, is a movie about a young man named Edward who lives alone in a mansion on top of a hill. The old man who invented Edward died of a heart attack shortly before completing him and placing plastic hands over his scissors. Avon Lady, Peg Boggs discovers Edward one morning during one of her rounds and takes him back to live with her in her pastel-coloured suburbia. As a movie, Edward Scissorhands contains all the distinguishing elements of a Tim Burton film. There is the prototype of the well-meaning outsider who, despite good intentions, will always fail at his or her attempts to fit in with the "normal" world. By presenting various symbols and incorporating numerous elements throughout the movie, Burton makes it clear that Edward Scissorhands will never belong in Peg Boggs's perfect suburbia. Although he can do various tasks such as trim shrubs, he is not classed as an average human and is seen as some sort of freak when he enters suburbia in the car. Even before viewing the film, one is aware that it is not a conventional horror. Burton's previous films Beetlejuice and Batman prepare one to expect a film which is visually stunning, perhaps with humour or. ...read more.

Middle

The neighbours in this suburb are curious, led by a nosy neighbour named Joyce. The movie then develops into a series of situations that seem inspired by silent comedy. Edward looks imprisoned and very lonely. He seems excluded from society. Edward has jet-black hair and an extremely pale face. He is wearing what looks like black leather. This man or thing is odd and peculiar. The imprisonment so to speak of Edward keeps the audiences curiosity because we have so many questions that need answering. Who is he? What is he like? Why is he there? What has he done? He is moved from his house to Suburbia. The impression of bright, happy life in Suburbia is bright. The houses are symmetrical. The paths are conventional, but there are boundaries, which creates the theme of outsiders. As a woman walks up a 'conventional' path we see she walks precisely in the direction of the path. The lady rings the doorbell of a house and we learn she is an Avon rep. Her name is Peg. When trying to sell her products Peg moves like a robot. She looks to have been programmed by Avon headquarters. To us the audience, Peg comes across, as she has been a rep for many years. She is full of energy and likes to make sure that there is no confrontation between people. ...read more.

Conclusion

Burton satirises a society that is so uniform, complacent and unimaginative that it is unable to cope with someone or something different. Significantly, Edward discards the trappings of the suburban society (cutting off the clothes Peg had given him) when it is revealed to be corrupt and shallow. He returns to the castle, an environment that is ironically more natural and human than that of the suburb. Thus Burton inverts the more usual horror convention in that his 'monster' is essentially more human than the apparently normal characters. The final image of Edward in the colourful gardens, surrounded by nature and creativity reinforces the idea that American society is too sterile and narrow to cope with one who does not conform. The symbols in Edward Scissorhands are many (all to show different things) The first is the hedges that Edward cuts. They show how he is really feeling inside and that he has some good inside him. The next is the manikin, which is behind Joyce when she is getting undressed in front of Edward. This shows that she is nothing more that a doll that has been dressed up. Thirdly, are the haircuts that Edward gives the entire gossip cluster. They are all mad like his so it shows that he is one of them now (but soon the hair will grow back and they will be different again). Lastly is the bank safe closing at the back of Edward. This is symbolic because it demonstrates that he has been moved out of the society. By Tom Simpson 10G ...read more.

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