1993 was a big year in The Entertainment Industry. “Jurassic Park” raised the bar pioneering Computer Generated Imaginary, Steven Spielberg won his first “Best Director” & “Best Picture” awards for “Schindler’s List,” Tom Hanks won his first “Best Actor” award for his performance in “Philadelphia,” cartoons such as “Animaniacs” and “Beavis & Butthead” became big names in the animation department, TV shows like “Power Rangers” &” The X-Files” became pop culture phenomenons, Nirvana ruled the airwaves pioneering Grunge, one more thing, I was born on July 23rd, 1993 three months before “The Nightmare Before Christmas” came out.
Speaking of The Nightmare Before Christmas, now is the time to review one of my favorite Halloween/Christmas movies.
The Nightmare Before Christmas was released in October 29th, 1993. (same year Hocus Pocus came out) It received critical acclaim from critics and movie goers alike. In addition to positive reception, the film also made enough revenue at the box office. The Nightmare Before Christmas spawned numerous merchandise, crossover appearances in the “Kingdom Hearts” series and last but not least, video game sequel titled, “Oogie’s Revenge.” As a tradition, Freeform (formerly known as ABC Family) continues to air The Nightmare Before Christmas every Halloween & Christmas as part of their blocks, “31 Nights Of Christmas” & “25 Days Of Christmas.”
A sequel is currently in the works. As of 2020, No confirmation for an intended release date has been announced. The closest thing we have for a sequel is the aforementioned video game Oogie’s Revenge. Rumors speculate a live action remake of the 1993 masterpiece is in the works.
Today’s review contains SPOILERS. I don’t care if I’m giving away juicy details. We all know this timeless classic since 1993. Countless memes, references, parodies etc. remind us folks why this gem is a masterpiece.
Pros & Cons
Pros: The Main Cast including Chris Sarandon, Catherine O’Hara, Paul Reubens & Ken Page all did an excellent job for their respective voiceover performances.
Henry Selick did an excellent job directing.
Tim Burton served as a producer. He made sure every single detail remains intact.
Stop-Motion Animation looked flawless bringing many things to life like the characters, setting, environmental detail, fluid movements among a few elements depicted as a living/undead breathing world.
Danny Elfman wrote musical numbers. Tim & Danny brainstormed potential ideas and all songs are unforgettable. You can’t forget which one pops inside your noggin. You can also listen to a special edition cover album with many musicians/bands, most notably Marilyn Manson singing “This Is Halloween.”
My favorite part is The Mayor ringing Jack’s doorbell. Then, he switches his face by knocking at the door. To put the icing on the cake, he tumbles on the staircase. That scene totally gets Bonus Points for making me laugh so hard, yet it still does.
My favorite line from The Mayor is “Jack answer me!”
My favorite song from the movie is Oogie Boogie’s song.
An instrumental version of “What’s This” is often played in movie trailers.
The local residents live in Halloween Town. Disney Channel later made a film series called, “Halloweentown” which has nothing to do with The Nightmare Before Christmas.
Character Development involving Jack. At first, he gets tired doing his schtick he’s been performing every Halloween. Upon entering Christmas Town, he decides to give Christmas a spin by using his tricks filling in as Santa Claus or as he calls him, “Sandy Claws.” Towards the end of the movie, he realizes his mistake. Jack rescues Santa from the clutches of Oogie Boogie. Thus, redeeming himself.
Jack’s tall, thin, lanky pale face and black suit predates Slender Man. Unlike Slender Man, Jack is a nice guy.
Jack experimenting with Christmas ornaments made me chuckle. As if he’s treating them like rocket science.
Chemistry between Jack & Sally felt organic. Sally tries to warn Jack not to replace Santa or else things will get out of hand. Jack eventually learns his lesson.
Jack giving out his own interpretation of giving presents to kids, was played for laughs.
Jack’s fight with Oogie was later used for the first Kingdom Hearts game when you assist Jack to defeat Oogie with the latter filling in as a boss.
Cons: No flaws spotted. Tim & The Crew deserve Bonus Points for all their hard work.
The Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!
The Nightmare Before Christmas remains as a timeless classic. I still watch it every Halloween or Christmas as a tradition. I also count The Nightmare Before Christmas as one of my favorite Disney films. If you have the time to watch this or introduce this masterpiece to your kids, I strongly recommend it. A sequel is definitely overdue. Let’s hope this doesn’t become a cheap direct-to-DVD sequel.