Sweeney Todd is a fantastic musical movie that tells a fantastic story with a variety of characters, all of whom have great personalities. While the movie itself is quite dark in content, the songs throughout it really manage to make the movie have good energy, keeping audiences engaged from the start.
All the songs are performed incredibly well with characters like Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter showing off their fantastic voices throughout. But as is the case with any musical, not every song is a catchy hit that everyone remembers, while there are still plenty that will get people humming and singing weeks after seeing the movie.
sixteen “Green finch and linnet bird”
This one is sung by Johanna Barker, and while the voice is excellent and the performance itself is compelling, the problem with this song is that it doesn’t really fit in with the rest. It’s sung in a totally different way and it feels a bit more romantic than anything else.
Because the movie is so dark, it stands out from the rest, and not in a good way. It feels like too big of a change, which is a shame because this should be a much more important moment for the character than he ends up becoming.
fifteen “The contest”
Like the previous song, “The Contest” is one that stands out for being very different in tone from the rest of the movie. The song sees Sweeney Todd and Adolfo Pirelli coming and going as they shave to show who is the best, and it certainly does a good job of showcasing Sweeney’s skills.
It is one of the funniest songs as it is quite upbeat and that in itself is refreshing and exciting. But it just lacks the emotional aspect, which is where this movie thrives.
14 “By sea”
This is truly the moment where it becomes clear how Miss Lovett feels about Sweeney Todd, with the perfect family life painted for them. Provides some fun images and a rare moment of sparkle as they are displayed on the beach in your imagination.
However, that’s also the reason why it’s not one of the best songs in the movie because it just doesn’t fit as well as the other songs. The movie is dark in tone and has a lot of songs on serious issues, so this one doesn’t quite work, even though it’s a bit of fun to break things up.
13 “Ladies in their sensibilities”
This song is performed by Beadle Bamford and is very well performed. Rather than being full of major notes, it is composed more like a fast rhyme, which is actually a lot of fun and helps make this song memorable.
However, compared to other songs in the movie, this one really lacks importance. After all, this song is literally about Beadle trying to convince Judge Turpin to shave. It shows how the characters care about Turpin, but it’s not a big moment in the movie.
This occurs when Ms. Lovett tries to calm Sweeney Todd, who is impatient not to kill Judge Turpin right away.
It’s a good moment that shows that Ms. Lovett is smart enough to see the big picture, and the fact that she’s so calm about the situation shows what she is like as a person as well. While sung very well, this is a pretty laid-back song compared to others and doesn’t show the best of Helena Bonham Carter.
eleven “Poor thing”
This song is a great example of why Sweeney Todd is such a fantastic musical. There aren’t many stories that can get away with telling such a vile story as what happens to Lucy Barker and turning it into a catchy song that is sung in such a hauntingly positive way.
It’s an important moment in the movie that clearly describes what happens to Lucy and establishes why Sweeney Todd seeks revenge. But it’s not just about revealing the plot, as the song itself is also very strong.
10 “Miraculous Pirelli Elixir”
Toby’s character is incredibly strong who brings a lot of energy to the movie, and that’s clear from his very first intro to this song. He bursts out, announcing the hair product in a really funny song, which also features Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett.
It’s a fun song with a nice back and forth element, but it’s not one that audiences will remember when the movie ends, but it does a great job of showing Toby and how safe he is.
9 “There is no place like London”
This is the first song in the movie and it does a fantastic job of setting the tone for the entire movie in terms of characters and what the songs will be like. With Anthony Hope and Sweeney Todd arriving in London together, he sets an excellent example of how different their views on the city are.
It highlights where the two characters are in their lives and establishes exactly the type of personalities each one has. This is something that then plays out in the rest of the movie, which makes it so cool.
8 “Final scene”
With a film so strong that it compromises so many great songs, it’s no wonder things are wrapped up brilliantly with “Final Scene” as well. It is one of the longest songs in the film and brings together various characters and fragments of other songs that have taken place.
It’s the height of drama and excitement when Sweeney Todd finally gets his revenge, and he and Mrs. Lovett have their emotional confrontation when the truth is revealed, leading to their deaths. It’s a true roller coaster of emotions and it’s a perfect way to end such a tense movie.
The story of Anthony Hope falling in love with Johanna is certainly much weaker than Sweeney Todd’s lust for revenge, yet it provides this very catchy song. In terms of emotion and power, it lacks some of the others, but it does have an incredibly memorable melody.
This is a song that people remember as they hum and sing it after the movie is said and made, which is what any good musical number can provide.
6 “A little priest”
This is the big time when Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett come up with their plan to murder people and then use the meat as the meat inside the cakes for their shop. It’s a great mix as the song is very dark, but the way they act is the opposite.
That helps this song stand out, with the music and the back-and-forth dialogue between the two main characters being great to watch.
This is another one of the great numbers in this musical, and it really shows Johnny Depp at his best. Sweeney and Lovett really put all the pieces together in this song, as the barber realizes that his plans to murder people mean he probably won’t be able to see his daughter.
However, his need for revenge outweighs everything and that passion and emotion really shines through within this song. It’s an incredibly dark moment within the movie, but it’s also very important, and the song lives up to the occasion.
4 “The worst cakes in London”
This is a great moment in the movie, this being one of the previous songs and one that is very well known. It’s a key moment for the character of Mrs. Lovett and it really explains everything about her character, with the need to take care of people without being very good at her job.
It sets out the sad world she lives in and why she is happy for Sweeney Todd to enter it. Also, the song itself is a lot of fun and it’s not as dark as some of the others.
3 “Not while I’m around”
In terms of emotion, this song falls short as one that will really make audiences think. Toby is an amazing character and the love he ends up cultivating for Ms. Lovett is clear in this song as he begins to worry that Sweeney Todd might hurt her.
He shows that in this beautifully written song while claiming that he will protect her, which is a very sweet moment. Even though he’s just a kid, Toby is willing to do whatever it takes to help her, which is a perfect time for him.
2 “Pretty Woman”
Seeing the main character and the man he’s actively trying to kill singing a duet together isn’t something you expect from this movie. Yet it’s moments like this that really make this movie what it is, and his wit is incredible to watch.
Johnny Depp and Alan Rickman are brilliant here, and their back and forth is a lot of fun to watch. The way things are very calm and relaxed, even though Sweeney Todd is preparing to assassinate Judge Turpin, is great, while the song itself is very catchy.
one “My friends”
This song is absolutely epic, this being Sweeney Todd’s greatest solo when he finally reunites with his razor blades. It shows how much they mean to him, as he genuinely sees the blades as part of him, almost as additional limbs.
It’s just an impressive performance from Johnny Depp though, as he really brings home the emotional aspect, while keeping his character as dark and sinister as possible.
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