Movie Review: Ed Wood

 

What’s with all the hate? I’ve seen some of Ed Wood’s films but I don’t think that they’re as bad as people make them out to be. This biopic of sorts isn’t focused on making Ed Wood look bad, it’s more about the celebration of his life and his passion with all the high and the lows.

Johnny Depp, all opinions aside, plays the part so well that you can’t help but sympathize and cheer for him as the underdog. He radiates with such passion for filmmaking that he wants his vision seen by everyone. Quick on his feet, he can get the story told with little material given. Sure, quality had to be sacrificed but it was all a part of the story he wanted to tell.

Here, we not only see Ed working on his films but also interacting with others in his life, like his girlfriend and Bela Lugosi. It’s the personal side of life that seems to be ignored whenever people, either through mob mentality or personal judgement, attack a film. By understanding the psyche of what was involved in all stages of production, we can see that maybe the movie that we called bad isn’t as bad as we think it is.

In terms of cult movies, people point to Tommy Wiseau as this generation’s Ed Wood just because of what was featured in The Room. He too had a vision that started as a play and then a lengthy novel. He made his movie and it’s celebrated as a cult movie, this generation’s Rocky Horror. What Tommy did was achieve his dream and succeeded, flaws and all.

As a student filmmaker, I can definitely relate to Ed Wood in some aspects. I write and direct my own work and work with as little as possible but still be able to tell a story. I probably won’t go as far as Ed did but I still have a passion to make films, the things that I find interesting.

This movie actually failed at the box office but snagged two Oscars. Today, it appears to be forgotten but I can’t imagine why. I find this to be the best of the Burton/Depp movies (knock on Wood), chronologically the second of the set. There’s so much character in the movie. I’d consider it a contender for future editions of the 1001 list but it’s up to the panel to decide.

8/10

Winner of Best Supporting Actor and Best Makeup

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