Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street (Highlights Edition)

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street (Highlights Edition)

4.3 6
by Johnny Depp
     
 
Stephen Sondheim's 1979 Broadway musical Sweeney Todd has been hailed as the composer's best work and the best musical of its decade, if not of the last three decades of the 20th century. It has been revived frequently and, as a work that straddles the line between musical theater and opera, adopted for the repertories of opera companies. When a stage musical

Overview

Stephen Sondheim's 1979 Broadway musical Sweeney Todd has been hailed as the composer's best work and the best musical of its decade, if not of the last three decades of the 20th century. It has been revived frequently and, as a work that straddles the line between musical theater and opera, adopted for the repertories of opera companies. When a stage musical is adapted into a motion picture, it is often the case that the score is given a bigger treatment. Broadway shows use a limited number of musicians, and, due to union regulations, Broadway cast albums tend to be recorded in a single day by casts also performing the music eight times that week on-stage. When the same score gets to Hollywood, producers often employ much larger orchestras and more elaborate recording techniques, for better or worse. Something like the opposite seems to have happened with director Tim Burton's 2007 film version of Sweeney Todd. Burton has cast the movie with actors not previously known as singers, starting with his frequent collaborator Johnny Depp (the two previously paired on Edward Scissorhands, Ed Wood, Sleepy Hollow, and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory), and also including Helena Bonham Carter (Burton's common-law wife) in the principal roles of Sweeney Todd and the pie shop proprietress Mrs. Lovett, plus Alan Rickman and comedian Sacha Baron Cohen (from the film Borat). To accommodate these performers, Sondheim orchestrator Jonathan Tunick has done some serious transposing of the score to bring the songs into the limited vocal ranges at hand. In this version, no one will confuse Sweeney Todd with an opera. Depp turns out to have a reasonable middle tenor, which makes for a very different Sweeney as compared with the baritones who usually essay the part on-stage. It might also cause some confusion with the secondary part of Anthony (Jamie Campbell Bower), if Depp did not adopt the same lower class British accent he used in the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. He also speak-sings his way through as much of the musical material as he can get away with. Bonham Carter does somewhat better, although she's no competition to previous Mrs. Lovetts such as Angela Lansbury and Patti LuPone. Much the same thing can be said about the rest. On a soundtrack album, the comparisons with stage performers are inevitable, but they shouldn't trouble moviegoers very much. Other associations may cause titters, however. Rickman sounds much as he did in the Harry Potter movies, and when he and Depp modestly mutter their way through the lovely ballad "Pretty Women," it's like hearing Captain Jack Sparrow in a duet with Professor Severus Snape. There are two editions of the soundtrack. The regular one eliminates some minor music from the score, notably including "The Ballad of Sweeney Todd" (which is, however, used instrumentally as "Opening Title"). The highlights disc does not include the lyric booklet and deletes the short "Alms! Alms!," "Ladies in Their Sensitivities," and the lengthy "Final Scene," which consists of reprises of previously heard songs and some more killings to add to the pile in this musical Grand Guignol. Some dialogue is also edited in the highlights version. (In the marketing environment of 2007, the makers of the soundtrack are to be commended for not introducing a gratuitous new composition in the end credits just to have a potential Oscar contender for best song, and for not including karaoke versions of the songs on the album.)

Product Details

Release Date:
12/18/2007
Label:
Nonesuch
UPC:
0075597996135
catalogNumber:
356540
Rank:
9027

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Johnny Depp   Primary Artist,Vocals
Paul Gemignani   Conductor
Andy Richards   Organ
Edward Sanders   Vocals
Alan Rickman   Vocals
Helena Bonham Carter   Vocals
Sacha Baron Cohen   Vocals
Laura Michelle Kelly   Vocals
Sweeney Todd Pit Orchestra   Performing Ensemble
Jamie Bower   Vocals
Jayne Wisener   Vocals

Technical Credits

Stephen Sondheim   Composer,Lyricist
Robert Hurwitz   Executive Producer
Andy Richards   Engineer
Geoff Foster   Engineer
Mike Higham   Arranger,Producer,Audio Production
Bruce Witkin   Producer
Jake Jackson   Engineer
Tim Burton   Executive Producer
Alex Heffes   Arranger
Robert Edridge-Waks   Editorial Coordinator

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Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street (Highlights Edition) 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 33 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
First off, I'm not a Johnny Depp lover but he's a phenomanal actor! I think the movie was fantasic, and I'm not one who's into bloody movies. I love musicals, so I was excited to see it. I had chills throughout the entire movie! Definitely my pick for the Oscar for Best Film!!! Loved it!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Just saw the film for the 2nd time. Amazing. Now I need the soundtrack. What extraordinary performances by everyone!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Well first of all, the movie was fantastic. The sound track features its own surprises. None of the actors are vocally trained but they do very well on their own merrit. Johnny Depp proves himself a fine singer and outstanding actor. I have thoroughly enjoyed listening to this work. It is a musical of high caliber and a fantastic horror flick as well and the soundtrack does it justice!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love this soundtrack. I have always been a johnny depp fan and a fan of musicals so seeing the two together was wonderful. I just can't stop listening to it. I would recommend it to anyone who is looking for a fresh sound.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
After listening to Len Cariou and Angela Lansburys verison of Sweeney Todd (Original Broadway Cast), I found my favorite. Johnny Depp is amazing at his singing. I never knew he could sing. Neither Alan Rickman who plays Judge Turpin. Everyone including Tim Burton, did an amazing job on this film. I'm very happy how things turned out. Even though there wasn't a ballad. None of them were there. There should have been one at the end of the film at least.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I picked this up not expecting to be blown away and my expectations were met. Though Mr. Depp does a suitable job of it his speak sing tactic gets a bit annoying but oh well, his voice is also often lost in the music making it hard to hear him at all. The biggest problem though is that half the songs are gone from the original sdtk and what songs remain are severly trimmed, A Little Priest and God Thats Good are cut in half, which is a shame because they are two of the best songs Broadway ever had.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Even though the previous Mrs. Lovetts and Mr. Todds could outsing Depp and Carter, no one can say they did a bad job vocally. I never knew Johnny Depp could sing and Carter's soprano voice perfectly coordinated with his voice.
fatewatcher1 More than 1 year ago
My children, 13, 15, 19 and 22 all love this soundtrackj and movie.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love this Soundtrack I cant Stop Listing to it..If you loved the movie and love johnny deep as much as i do you'll love the movie.
Guest More than 1 year ago
awesome soundtrack!!!! i havent been able to stop listening to it!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I REALLY enjoyed Sweeny Todd. I have always been a huge fan of Tim Burton. I really loved the dark humor in the movie. I was amazed with Johnny Depps' performance. Definitely Oscar Winning. A Must See Film!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
the best thing ever! My favorite songs ever!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Sweeney todd is 1#
Guest More than 1 year ago
I saw the movie about 9 times in like 2 days and I can't get the songs out of my head!!! Johnny Depp is amazing in this movie!!! A Little Priest, Pirelli's Miracle Elixir, By the Sea, and Not While I'm Around are my absolute favorite songs!!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ever since I saw the original Broadway production I have been eagerly awaiting a film version. When I heard who was doing it, I was concerned. When I saw the track listing, I was relieved. When I listened to it, I realized that my first concerns were appropriate. I have no real issues with what actually made it to the score (Carter is NO Lansbury - but who is?). What REALLY saddens me is how much is missing. Most especially, the entire chorus. No "Ballad of Sweeney Todd", no chorus on "Pirelli's Miracle Elixer", no chorus on "God That's Good", no chorus during the final scenes "what used to be "City on Fire"". Also, almost no ensenble work. The amazing duet/quartet between Joanna, Anthony, the Judge, and the Beedle is completely missing "probably WAY too hard for the basically non-singing cast to attempt". No wigmakers scene, no parlor ballads, no...you get the idea. Perhaps there is more in the film that was not included on the soundtrack album - but at only 71 minutes and spread over 2 CDs, time doesn't seem to be the issue. I'll still go to see the movie actually I glad I have already heard the soundtrack and know what is missing. I may be able to enjoy the movie, as a whole, more this way. It's really too bad. The talent pool is really quite good it's a shame that the director decided to strip the score of depth and complexity that has made it one of the finest ever to be heard on Broadway. "Phantom" and "The Producers" came to screen almost completely intact. It's a sorry shame that a show with such a better score had to be so watered down. Maybe it was to make room for the buckets of blood that spray all over the place... Listen to this on-line if you must - but when you can own the original cast recoring of ALL the music, there is NO reason to purchase this version.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I bought the soundtrack yesterday and haven't been able to stop listening to it. None of the actors had any professional singing background, but Depp's presence is captivating. You can see the images through out the album. I highly recommend this soundtrack. The music is indescribably beautiful. Make sure you get the full album and not just the highlights, it's worth it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I really love Sweeney Todd! I Just got the album to the movie, but I accidentally lost it. I get to buy it again this weekend, but it saddens me so much that I can't have it for a few days. When I get it I'm getting this one!
Guest More than 1 year ago
The songs are awesome. Very good cast for the Musical. Tim Burton is an amazing re-creation.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am soo excited for this movie to come out!! I love all of the actors in this movie so much. Also, my name is Johanna!! it is so cool that johnny is saying MY name...
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is very enjoyable, great to listen to in my car, but the songs make more sense after you see the movie. Yes, do see the movie.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just saw the movie and I can't get the music out of my head!! It's wonderful and entertaining, a must see movie!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago