Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Charlie Tahan, Winona Ryder, Catherine O’Hara, Martin Short, Martin Landau, Atticus Shaffer, Conchata Ferrell, Frank Welker
Release date: October 5

It's easy to insult Tim Burton these days. By giving filmgoers underwhelming movies like Alice in Wonderland and Dark Shadows, he's not exactly helping his own cause. But it's just as easy to forget that Burton was once Hollywood's most unconventional and wonderfully weird visionaries, a one-of-a-kind filmmaker whose imagination produced Beetlejuice (1988) and Edward Scissorhands (1990). Fans of those genre classics would love nothing more than to see Burton stop adapting obvious, Gothic properties with Johnny Depp and return to that old sense of quirky wonderment.

With Frankenweenie, he just might have done that. Based on Burton's short live-action film from 1984, this stop-motion animated film re-imagines Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein as the heartwarming playfully macabre tale of kiddie scientist Victor Frankenstein, whose love for his dog Sparky motivates him to bring the pooch back to life and contend with disapproving local townsfolk as a result. The title Frankenweenie alone should endear you to what's hopefully Burton's best movie since Sleepy Hollow (1999).