You know when you see something, and just can’t work out what you think about it? Last night, Burton’s Sweeney Todd did exactly that to me. Visually, it was extraordinary, from the grotesque mask he threw over London, to the perfectly timed visual brutalities and humour (both of which worked very well). The cast were uniformly excellent, whether that be the leads or the cameos and support (I particularly enjoyed Depp and Rickman), and the story bolts along neatly.
What I can’t decide, is whether I would enjoy the musical in any other form. While some of the lyrics were interesting, others were frankly dreadful, and very little of the music has stuck in my head (actually, I can’t remember a single tune). There was also an annoying tendency for characters to sing about something that had just happened – re-describing something that you just saw with your own eyes, rather than singing through the moments in question – which made the action a little stuttery at times.
I think I enjoyed it. I just wasn’t able to get lost in it.