Reviewed by: Maggi
loss of father
ghosts in the Bible
witches in the Bible
What is the Occult? Answer
arachnophobia / insectophobia
portal to hell
Johnny Depp … Ichabod Crane
Christina Ricci … Katrina Van Tassel
Miranda Richardson … Lady Van Tassel/Crone
Michael Gambon … Baltus Van Tassel
Christopher Walken … Hessian Horseman
Christopher Lee … Burgomaster
Casper Van Dien … Brom Van Brunt
Jeffrey Jones … Reverend Steenwyck
Richard Griffiths … Magistrate Philipse
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“Who will it come for next?!”
I was a bit leery at first when going to see “Sleepy Hollow”. Many questions came to mind, considering that the film is not the same as the Washington Irving story and it does have an “R” rating. I wondered, “has this been turned into another graphic horror movie?—Has Hollywood once again taken a classic and turned it into a piece of trash?—Is it just going to be lots of gore and violence?” After all, Hollywood seems more interested in making a buck then in telling a compelling story. I found my fears were unfounded. “Sleepy Hollow” is an interesting and fun story, though quirky at times.
Unlike the animated version, the character of Ichabod Crane (Johnny Depp) is a New York City constable, dispatched to the upstate village of Sleepy Hollow to investigate a string of murders where all the victims have been beheaded. When he arrives in Sleepy Hollow, Crane hears the story of a Revolutionary War mercenary who beheaded American soldiers, until he himself was beheaded. Now, the locals of the town believe that the horseman rides through the night, cutting off people’s heads to replace his own.
This film does have its moments of gore. The trailer/commercial states, “heads will roll,” and roll they do. In fact, most of the gory scenes are when the headless horseman is chopping the heads off of his victims. These scenes can be pretty gruesome and bloody at times. Another part of the film that some Christians may object to are scenes of witchcraft and spells, as well as the pastor of the local church being an adulterer. One sex scene is also included, though it may be considered mild by today’s “R” rating standards (an aerial view of a couple enganged in sex, including movement). There is also a scene in which Crane tells of his Bible-thumping father killing his mother and then using the Bible as an excuse for the murder. Crane then states “I was 7 when I lost my faith.”
However, the church is shown as a refuge in which one can be safe from the feared horseman. I personally was not offended at any of these scenes because I believe that it added to the story. It was also refreshing to sit through an entire movie and not hear any obscenities, especially the “f” word or God’s name being used in vain.
Tim Burton is an oddball when it comes to making movies. they’re quirky and silly, but they’re also serious when they need to be. And that’s what “Sleepy Hollow” is. It has its moments of silliness, and its moments of seriousness, and Johnny Depp is the perfect actor to play the main character. I was never much of a Depp fan, but seeing that he’s also a bit of an oddball, it was as if he didn’t even need to act when playing the role of the quirky and strange Ichabod Crane. To my surprise, this film exceeded my expectations. It is not for the weak of stomach, however, nor those who are easily offended.
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.