The Nightmare Before Christmas

Tired of scaring humans every October 31 with the same old bag of tricks, Jack Skellington, the spindly king of Halloween Town, kidnaps Santa Claus and plans to deliver shrunken heads and other ghoulish gifts to children on Christmas morning.
HD Available
Netflix Rating: 3.9
NYT Review
Animated. Halloweentown's leader aims to kidnap Santa. Delectably ghoulish fairytale. Read the review
Rotten Tomatoes: Fresh 96%
Critics' score: 96   Audience score: 89   Rotten Tomatoes page
Top Rotten Tomatoes Critics

This cautionary fable (Be True to Your Ghoulish Self) may be a little too twisted for little kids but anyone 8 or older will spot the friendly glint behind jack's empty eye sockets. full review

David Ansen, Newsweek

I'm not sure I've ever seen a fantasy film that's at once so visually amazing and so emotionally dead. full review

Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly

A work of grand visual wit, clever songs, funny gags and genuine pathos, it is perhaps the greatest stop-motion animated film ever, a painstaking style of model animation that computers have all but completely done away with. full review

Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel

A fun house of funereal glamour. full review

Richard Corliss, TIME Magazine

The set designs are ingenious and the songs (music and lyrics by Danny Elfman) are fairly good. full review

Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader

The dazzling techniques employed here create a strikinglook that's never been seen in such sustained form, making this a unique curio that will appeal to kids and film enthusiasts alike. full review

Todd McCarthy, Variety

The hippest of all holiday classics, the 1993 release rendered anew in 3-D format remains a postmodern three-ring circus of morbid humor, eye-popping puppet animation and show-stopping songs. full review

Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune

Flattened for years on cable and video, Nightmare has been resurrected in all its tactile glory. full review

Scott Brown, Entertainment Weekly

(Producer Tim) Burton's skewed vision is seamlessly realized by director Henry Selick and cleverly enhanced by Danny Elfman's songs. full review

Elizabeth Weitzman, New York Daily News

This is the movie puts the "oooh" back in "boo." full review

Terry Lawson, Detroit Free Press

Thirteen years after its debut, Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas has gone 3D, which makes a good thing even better. full review

Nancy Churnin, Dallas Morning News

If the 3-D fails to grab you as much as you might hope, it never takes you out of the movie, which is a remarkable feat. full review

Daniel Gray Longino, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The Nightmare Before Christmas is a major step forward for both stop-motion animation, which is stunningly well used, and for Mr. Burton himself. He now moves from the level of extremely talented eccentric to that of Disney-style household word. full review

Janet Maslin, New York Times

Of all the new Halloween films, only this one has the power to truly haunt our dreams.

Peter Travers, Rolling Stone

Working with gifted artists and designers, [Burton] has made a world here that is as completely new as the worlds we saw for the first time in such films as Metropolis, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari or Star Wars. full review

Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

This brilliant combination of stop-motion animation, three-dimensional sets and superbly imaginative graphics, brings animation to new peaks. full review

Desson Thomson, Washington Post

This is a modern classic that enriches the Christmas tradition by turning it on its head and spinning it like a bob. full review

Richard Harrington, Washington Post

The Nightmare Before Christmas has something to offer just about everyone. full review

James Berardinelli, ReelViews
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