'Big Eyes' and the Bigger Picture

December 29, 2014 9:00 PM

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When the bizarreness of reality suffices, even Tim Burton can kick back and tell a great story without the garish visual lushness that hallmarks his more recent endeavors (Alice in Wonderland, Willy Wonka). But I'm a fan of Burton's work, going all the way back to his Pee Wee and Beetlejuice days and delighted he undertook the honorable task of telling a tale of feminine empowerment (though latent and moot, as was indicative of the times) interwoven with a great art history lesson. This cinematic lesson ties in superbly with the exploding pop surrealism genre, something I just happened to write on myself (A Pop Surrealism Primer Spotlighting Mab Graves). So what if Big Eyes is the penultimate in product placement? Burton, as long time collector of Keane originals and in keeping with his flamboyant style, can go right ahead and make a film that might conceivably take an entire oeuvres' value through the roof....

For me, the release of Big Eyes, starring the eminently likable Amy Adams, is truly a "And now, the rest of the story..." moment, for the story of Margaret Keane and the waifs she painted and nearly lost as her own legacy help explain why big eyes to this day, as rendered by talented artists everywh...

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