'Dark Shadows' Critic Reviews

73%
MovieWeb:   12 reviews
38%
Rotten Tomatoes:   231 reviews
  • Greg Maki Star-Democrat (Easton, MD)
    50
    "... There is a been-there-done-that feeling permeating all of 'Dark Shadows,' no matter how entertaining it might be at times.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Stephanie Zacharek Movieline
    56
    Dark Shadows suffers from the now-predictable Tim Burton pile-on: Like a matron who's gone mad for garish jewelry, he just doesn't know when to stop.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Ian Freer Empire Magazine
    60
    This is not the knockabout comedy the trailer suggests. Instead, it cleaves closer to what you expect from Burton: darkness, quirk and Johnny Depp on great form.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Brian Henry Martin UTV
    20
    Eight movies together later and that razor sharp Depp / Burton relationship now feels less like scissorhands and more like spoonfingers.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Jason Buchanan TV Guide's Movie Guide
    25
    These shadows aren't nearly as dark as they are dull, ensuring that not even Burton's trademark visuals are capable of hypnotizing us into believing that we're seeing something remotely interesting.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Matt Pais RedEye
    50
    A movie about the undead can still be DOA.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Nell Minow Beliefnet
    59
    Wonderfully weird visuals from Tim Burton and a highly watchable performance by his muse, Johnny Depp cannot keep the tone from faltering and the results are unsatisfying.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Rene Rodriguez Miami Herald
    50
    Johnny Depp and Tim Burton enable each other's laziest, most indulgent habits: They make movies to entertain themselves instead of the audience.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Alonso Duralde The Wrap
    An expensive, all-star bore, albeit a bore that's been art-directed to a fare-thee-well.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Bob Mondello NPR
    Handsome, vaguely true to the old soap opera, and inert.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Mick LaSalle San Francisco Chronicle
    75
    When you consider all the pitfalls avoided, and all the laughs and pleasures it provides along the way, "Dark Shadows" is a satisfying and skillful effort.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Peter Paras E! Online
    67
    While the script is a mess and the finale underwhelms, if you still dig the Depp/Burton combo does it really matter?
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • David Medsker Bullz-Eye.com
    40
    On paper, Dark Shadows is a home run, but they don't play the games on paper.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Marjorie Baumgarten Austin Chronicle
    50
    The film is not an out-and-out comedy, nor is it a supernatural spooker: It can't out-camp the original and it doesn't make us fear the creatures of the night. However, Dark Shadows is not without some delightful moments.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Paul Byrnes Sydney Morning Herald
    50
    When Burton is going through the motions, his films are as involving as a school play. He directs this film on autopilot. Ed Wood would have done it better.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Kimberly Gadette Doddle
    50
    A loss of empathy for the hero vampire drains the lifeblood out of this project. Flaws don't necessarily derail a film -- but nothing nails the coffin shut quite like an unlikeable Barnabas Collins.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Moira MacDonald Seattle Times
    63
    You keep wishing that the movie was either scarier or funnier - too often it flatlines between the two - but it's nonetheless impossible to look away.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Jim Judy Screen It!
    While nothing here frightened me like its TV predecessor so long ago, it scares me to think that those involved read the script and thought it would be great from start to finish. It isn't. (Full Content Review for Parents also available)
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • David Edelstein NPR
    The script by Seth Grahame-Smith is witless and meandering - and I wouldn't mind the witless so much if it moved, or the meandering if it were droll.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Matt Glasby Total Film
    60
    One of the strangest mainstream releases of recent times, Dark Shadows' demented gothic melodrama/fish-out-of-water comedy/creature feature feels like you've slipped into a Burton fever-dream.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Jim Slotek Jam! Movies
    70
    Dark Shadows is fun if you go with it.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Joe Williams St. Louis Post-Dispatch
    75
    "Dark Shadows" may be too light for vampire purists or fans of the original show, but fresh blood is just what the doctor ordered.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Scott Tobias AV Club
    50
    There's no doubt that viewers still know that they're watching a Tim Burton movie. The question now is why.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Laura Clifford Reeling Reviews
    50
    Ironically, fans of the series seem to be the least targeted demographic...and Burton has failed to mine the comic possibilities of the 'Ed Wood' vibe that made the series' production infamous.
    Full Review » 2 years ago
  • Henry Fitzherbert Daily Express
    40
    The costumes and production design are first class but Dark Shadows is only a must-see for Burton devotees.
    Full Review » 2 years ago