The Nightmare Before Christmas

1993, Comedy/Kids & family, 1h 15m

97 Reviews 250,000+ Ratings

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critics consensus

The Nightmare Before Christmas is a stunningly original and visually delightful work of stop-motion animation. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

The film follows the misadventures of Jack Skellington, Halloweentown's beloved pumpkin king, who has become bored with the same annual routine of frightening people in the "real world." When Jack accidentally stumbles on Christmastown, all bright colors and warm spirits, he gets a new lease on life -- he plots to bring Christmas under his control by kidnapping Santa Claus and taking over the role. But Jack soon discovers even the best-laid plans of mice and skeleton men can go seriously awry.

Cast & Crew

Danny Elfman
Jack Skellington, Barrel
Voice
Catherine O'Hara
Sally, Shock
Voice
William Hickey
Evil Scientist
Voice
Glenn Shadix
Mayor
Voice
Paul Reubens
Lock
Voice
Ken Page
Oogie Boogie
Voice
Edward Ivory
Santa
Voice
Danny Elfman
Associate Producer
Jill Jacobs
Associate Producer
Diane Minter Lewis
Associate Producer
Philip Lofaro
Associate Producer
Danny Elfman
Original Music
Pete Kozachik
Cinematographer
Stan Webb
Film Editor
Tim Burton
Production Designer
Denise Di Novi
Production Designer
Mike Cachuela
Storyboard Artist
Richard L. Anderson
Supervising Sound Editor
Ezra Dweck
Foley Mixer
Shawn Murphy
Score Mixer
Shawn Murphy
Sound Re-Recording Mixer
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Critic Reviews for The Nightmare Before Christmas

Audience Reviews for The Nightmare Before Christmas

  • Dec 19, 2016
    A delightful and magical story that can be enjoyed by all ages, Tim Burton and Henry Selick's stop motion masterpiece is both a Halloween and Christmas classic, thanks to it's wonderful songs, brilliant animation and unforgettable characters.
    Matthew M Super Reviewer
  • Oct 31, 2016
    What happens when the limelight no longer satisfies the ego? How do we mitigate our inherent talents with our societal expectations? Does inspiration come from within, or are we simply regurgitating our influences? These questions and many more are constantly posited by Walt Disney's "The Nightmare Before Christmas" (inspired by actual Tim Burton/Danny Elfman cartoons/whistling). In this gorgeous live action film, an anorexic fascist opera singer slips into ennui after his annual ego-stroking festival is put on by Bauhaus cosplay enthusiasts. Meanwhile, a young woman with self-harm issues gets her Hannibal Lecter/Dr. Strangelove father drunk so she can stalk her village's narcissistic, singing leader and comment to herself about his manic and nihilistic ruminations. After hallucinating from a lack of sleep (and possibly nutrition), the thin white duke decides to co-opt the culture of a utopian winterland. His bleak, gothic perspective lends a jaded and violent hue to the simulacra he constructs. Ultimately, he orchestrates highly organized terrorist attacks on the children of American citizens during the Christmas holiday season - which provokes a military response. Failing in his quest for power, he settles for a mundane coupling with his silent female watcher and relegates himself to the amenities of mediocrity back in his small dysfunctional village. The subtleties of the human condition in this film would make Werner Herzog weep. Even the most jaded heart must realize the marketing potential of this film. It is, however, odd that it would only be released for two viewings on Halloween. It's a bold move, but I imagine that the modern viral nature of art will ensure that this will see a DVD release after its very brief and limited theatrical run. If not, I suppose I will feel smug enough in being one of the few and fortunate folks to have seen this film unfettered by mainstream success.
    K Nife C Super Reviewer
  • Oct 04, 2016
    Ghoulish & frightful scenery and presentation, The Nightmare Before Christmas is a seasonal treat that is eerily swell. From its effortless animation to its splendid musical numbers, Tim Burton's original tale is majestic and visionary. 4/5
    Eugene B Super Reviewer
  • Dec 05, 2015
    The designs are wonderful and I always appreciate a children's movie that has no problem being scary. However, despite it's short running time, it feels overlong . . . this probably the result of the uneven score which, despite a few catchy songs, is comprised of more mediocre material than a lot of people would care to admit.
    Alec B Super Reviewer

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