"This was a very enjoyable telling of the classic tale that is very heavy on atmosphere. The DVD has several extra features that really add to its value beyond the straight movie too.The look and feel of the film are great. We are taken back to the late 1790s to a very convincing Sleepy Hollow that has lots of fog and smoke, distant lightning, scary jack-o-lanterns, and twisted trees. The movie has a great deal of suspense built into it, and we are treated to lots of tense moments when the horsemen is near, along with some fairly short, but sometimes very intense scenes of decapitation. The film is much more of a drama than a horror film -- the plot is quite complex and usually laid out well. For me, one of the best parts of the film was the Danny Elfman score -- it was very rich, with lots of interesting effects built into -- brooding strings, eerie children's chorus, and tinkling bells. It added both suspense and humor to the film. The acting was good. Johnny Depp and Tim Burton work well together -- Depp shows a nice range of emotions as the somewhat nervous Ichabod Crane who was investigating the horseman's murders. Christina Ricci played a very pretty but very mysterious young lady with links to the horsemen. The whole cast was very good and tended to play a bit over the top (this is Tim Burton after all). A particular favorite for me was Christopher Lee in a small but powerful role as a judge who sends constable Crane off to Sleepy Hollow.The DVD has several very good features, including commentary by Tim Burton, a nice set of interviews with cast and crew, and a good "Making of the Movie" feature that shows how a lot of the special effects (including decapitation) were done. A good movie on a DVD with lots of features!"
GREAT FUN now in HIGH DEFINITION!!! can you ask for more?
Paulo Leite | Lisbon, Portugal | 07/30/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I love this film. Tim Burton really did a wonderful job creating that kind of atmosphere no other director can create... and the cast is superb!
Johnny Depp delivers one of his most offbeat performances... and Christopher Walken as the headless horseman... and Michael Gambon... all are great.
Now about the things you want to know... the image here is top notch. Crystal clear, high definition picture as you've never seen - which is interesting: since the film has a dark cinematography you'll be amazed how well the High Def takes advantage of all it can do to give you a kind of image you'll think you only get in a movie theatre.
In fact, to see the forest with all the fog and those trees in gorgeous high definition is a trully cinematic experience. And I do believe this is one of those movies who beg for high definition - And this HD-DVD edition delivers it just as you'd expect: flawlessly.
And when it comes to sound... boy, this is incredible... an umbelievable bass runs through my living room as the horse gallops through the woods. All I can say is thast I've rarelly seen a sound design job as well done as this!
Get this HD-DVD for a true cinematic experience!"
The dark genius of Tim Burton
M. Rausseo | Planet Earth | 08/24/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In the middle of the mist we hear a horse ride, accelerated rhythm, until the fog dissipates and we see an impressive figure, his presence irradiates pure evil, his arm is ready to take another head.
Tim Burton's back to the macabre.
Gothic, colorful and vampire-ish, Sleepy Hollow shows us the vision of this extravagant director about Washington Irving's tale. It's a melodramatic story about the quarrel between intellect and emotion, pragmatism and mysticism, science and superstition.
The sleek Constable Ichabod Crane puts science above everything. His controversial brainstorms take him to investigate a series of murders committed in the local community of Sleepy Hollow. Four people have been beheaded and everyone thinks the murderer is a headless horseman, a fierce war mercenary that came from the dead to take his vengeance.
Ichabod will try to rationalize the facts, while he struggles to resist the charms of Katrina Van Tassel, only to reach the inevitable conclusion: that there is not a logical explanation for the murders.
Visually stunning, Sleepy Hollow has some elements from the horror genre. A demonic villain that terrorizes a town. But it's also a gothic adventure with a pale hero running through skeletal trees to rescue his damsel in distress. That the hero is in more danger that the damsel is one of the great twists in this film.
As Ichabod Crane, Johnny Depp is an exquisite mix of neurosis, extravagances, manias and quirkiness. He's the antithesis of the classical hero, a coward with a brilliant mind but no experience in how to defeat an evil ghost. He's funny without being clowny.
Alongside him, there's a cast of excellent actors that help recreate Burton's story.
Sleepy Hollow is a little over the top in his drama management and his approximation to comedy. But still, is a movie that achieves to recreate a world of fantasy with great realism, thanks to the skills of those who imagined an 18 century village that it could well be hell's portal.
Sleepy Hollow also confirms that Burton continues to ride on the dark side of creativity, hearing his own voices. In the movies, that's an enough excuse to feel forever grateful. "
Tim Burton does Hammer horror, with stunning results
Groucho M | Reading, PA USA | 06/03/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Loosely based on both the original Washington Irving story as well as the Disney version, Tim Burton's Sleepy Hollow takes a revisionist approach and ends up with a genuine horror classic. Johnny Depp stars as "Constable" Ichabod Crane, an 18th century detective keen on using scientific methods (unheard of in this period) to solve crimes. Annoyed by his unconventional methods, Magistrate Christopher Lee sends Depp upstate to Sleepy Hollow to investigate a string of grisly murders-by-beheading. Depp/Crane becomes involved in a supernatural situation that tests his lack of faith (a sub-plot resulting from a childhood trauma involving his mother [Lisa Marie] and sinister father) and makes him a full witness to the goulish decapitations. Christopher Walken is absolutely frightening as the horseman, and Christina Ricci and a cast of classic British actors flesh (pardon the pun) out the story with hints of shady business among the town's statesmen. The commentary by Burton is fairly optional, but the "making of" and other features enhance the movie superbly. Burton uses a foggy, bleached style to enhance the appearance and tone of the movie, creating a genuinely unique vision. Be warned, though - there's lots of loppings in this flick, so it's definitely not for the squeamish. With homage to Hammer horror films but otherwise unique in the genre, Sleepy Hollow should easily take its place among other groundbreaking horror movies like The Shining or An American Werewolf in London. Need a movie to shake you out of your Friday-the-13th complacency? Get this DVD!"
Not your classic horror movie...
supertechy | 05/07/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm not a huge horror movie fan. I'm not even a fan of movies satirizing horror movies (i.e. The Scream series was probably one of the biggest wastes of film resources), but I must say, Sleepy Hollow was scary in a funny way. This movie isn't SUPPOSED to be scary at all. Yes, the idea of a "horseman...without a head" is supposed to be a little spooky, but that is not the intended purpose of the film. IF you want the scary version, watch the animated Sleepy Hollow by Disney. Burton does an AMAZING job with the visual and sound effects. Johnny has come a long way since 21 Jumpstreet (not that he was bad then, either). I think he did a superb job interpreting Ichabod Crane (a regular wimp trying to impress a girl is always one of the funniest things to observe. I know because people tell me I look funny when I try to impress the ladies...) Don't get me wrong, the movie has it's points that will make you jump and cringe, but not enough to earn--and I'm glad it didn't--a seat in the horror movie section. I'd love to see it either in the suspense or comedy sections. The movie is one of the best movies Burton has come out with since Beatlejuice and Batman. Burton is back, and he's kicking some butt and "taking some heads!" Now if he would come back to Batman and fix the mess Schumacher created..."