Sleepy Hollow ★★★ 1999 (R)
Gorgeous and grisly Burtonized version of Washington Irving's tale “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.” In this retelling, Ichabod Crane (Depp) is a New York constable who believes in reason and science, which won't do him much good when he's sent to the upstate hamlet of Sleepy Hollow to investigate a series of decapitation murders. Crane is housed by wealthy Balthus Van Tassel (Gambon), whose somewhat fey daughter Katrina (Ricci) falls for the quaking Crane, who refuses to believe that a ghost is committing mayhem. He's soon confronted by the graphic evidence of his own eyes. (Heads do certainly roll). Landau has a wordless cameo as the second victim. 105m/C VHS, DVD, Blu-ray Disc, UMD . Johnny Depp, Christina Ricci, Miranda Richardson, Michael Gambon, Christopher Walken, Casper Van Dien, Jeffrey Jones, Richard Griffiths, Ian McDiarmid, Michael Gough, Christopher Lee, Marc Pickering, Lisa Marie, Steven Waddington, Claire Skinner, Alun Armstrong, Mark Spalding, Jessica Oyelowo; Cameos: Martin Landau; D: Tim Burton; W: Andrew Kevin Walker; C: Emmanuel Lubezki; M: Danny Elfman. Oscars '99: Art Dir./Set Dec.; British Acad. '99: Art Dir./Set Dec., Costume Des.
SLEEPY HOLLOW lies about three-quarters of a mile north of Tarrytown, New York, and is famous for both its old Dutch church (1699) and for its association with the writings of Washington Irving. The area was named for a narrow ravine through which flows the Pocantico River. Sleepy Hollow is the site of Irving's tale of Ichabod Crane and the "headless horseman." Irving first visited the Sleepy Hollow region in his youth, and after his death, he was buried in the cemetery behind the Dutch church. Romantic memories of Sleepy Hollow recur in Irving's essays (for example, Wolfert's Roost) and attain their most complete and delightful expression in "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," originally published in The Sketch Book in 1819.
Myers, Andrew B., ed. The Knickerbocker Tradition: Washington Irving's New York. Tarrytown, N.Y.: Sleepy Hollow Restorations, 1974.
Stanley T.Williams/h. s.