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USA 1994
Directed by
Tim Burton
121 minutes
Rated M

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
3.5 stars

Ed Wood

Edward D.Wood Jr. holds the crown for being the worst film-maker in the history of Hollywood. He might have had enthusiasm and passion for film-making but unfortunately he didn’t have the talent to back it up. Ed Wood is an amusing (for those who like their humour on the camp side) look at that part of his career during which he made his best-known films, Glen Or Glenda and Plan Nine From Outer Space. It is ironic of course that a film about a man who made the worst films ever committed to celluloid would itself make such an enjoyable, if somewhat overlong, yarn about the Hollywood that lives behind the glamour of stardom, in the murk where the failures and has-beens reside. Tim Burton, aided by cinematographer Stefan Czapsky and production designer Tom Duffield, does a fine job of bringing the story to the screen with the re-creation of Wood's films a treat.
Depp is wonderfully over-the-top as the eccentric Wood, but the standout performance is that of Martin Landau, whose Academy Award-winning turn as the drug-dependant Bela Lugosi is exceptional as he breathes life and humour into the superannuated horror film star who was befriended by Wood (the film also won an Oscar for make-up) . Sarah Jessica Parker, Patricia Arquette Jeffrey Jones and Bill Murray also amuse in their roles..

FYI: A major latter-day challenger to Wood is Tommy Wiseau whose 2003 film The Room is regularly referred to as "The Citizen Kane of Bad Movies".




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