My family LOVES movies. We love to watch all kinds of movies.
We know our kids and what they can handle, generally. For example, you many think we are nuts but we probably wouldn't consider showing our daughters Bambi because they are *very* sensitive to animals dying in film and they would have some serious waterworks going when Bambi loses him mum.
One of their current favorite movies is Sweeney Todd. Yep, Demon Barber Of Fleet Street with Johnny Depp (they have probably seen just about every Johnny Depp movie made, well, most of them anyway) and Helena Bonham Carter. Brilliant movie. Awesome music. We've been "on" this movie for at least a month now and it has actually inspired a lot of things in our lives.
First of all, the music is absolutely phenomenal! Not only are we movie buffs, but we LOVE our music! Our tastes vary, but we listen to just about everything and the girls adore musicals including Sound Of Music, Seven Brides For Seven Brothers (Marti sat through this entire movie at 3 years old), Phantom Of The Opera (2004 version) and others so it's no surprise that they would like Sweeney, really.
Then there is the connections thing. The connections from this movie alone has been amazing. There is the obvious "Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon" connections which we do all the time (and I have done since I was a kid with my mum).
There is also getting to compare the actor's performances with their other characters. We are unified in believing that Sweeney Todd is Johnny Depp's best performance, EVER (and as I have said, we have seen most of his movies (Like 33 out of his 35 movies))! As well as talk about the fact that there are 3 Harry Potter stars in this one movie (in case you don't know... Helena is Belatrix, Alan Rickman is Snape and Timothy Spall is Pettigrew).
We also get to talk about all the movies that Tim Burton and Johnny have done together (up to six now) as well as the ones Tim, Johnny & Helena have done together (3), the ones Tim did with his former fiance (5, plus she was the inspiration for one of Marti's favorite characters, Sally), how he often casts many of the same people in a lot of his movies, and the Tim Burton films that Danny Elfman did the music for (10, I think). We get to talk about Tim's style, how he has a bit of an obsession with horror actors and how he often opens his movies in a similar fashion.
Of course, since watching Sweeney Todd we have rented a movie of the Broadway play with George Hearn and Patti LuPone. We discussed how we felt about their performances and how stage performances are so much different than movie performances. Marti prefers the movie over the stage performances to the point where she will cover her ears if anything else is on. I actually love George Hearn's performance in both the 1982 performance (which we watched on youtube) with Angela Lansbury and in the 2001 performance with Patti (the one we rented), but I hated his female costars. Angela and Patti were awful, in my opinion.
We also got to see someones Lego rendition of the Sweeney Todd songs on Youtube. After we watched these Marti went and tried to build similar things with our Legos, but we just don't have enough so she went and played Sweeney with her dolls upstairs. Here are some of the YouTube videos that we watched.
This guy has some Lego videos from Sweeney, from Dark Knight and from Star Wars
Now this guys videos aren't so great, but his Lego creations are amazing!
We also found this girl while searching for lyrics. She is quite good. She is a little shady at first and gets a couple lines wrong, but is overall really good.
We could go on and on with the connections I think.
All that aside, we have looked up so many words in the dictionary to let Marti know what they meant, and some of them to find out for myself really. Some might not be appropriate for some kids, but Marti was ready.
and the proper pronunciation of assuage
Oh, and the fact that we had to budget our tight Wal-Mart income in order to buy the movie and the soundtrack was also a source of discussion.
Well, that is all I can really think of for now, but I am sure there is more.