Sweeney Todd

Sweeney Todd is a musical about a demon barber on Flint Street. Set in Victorian London the atmosphere gives off a very cold and dark feel to it. Sweeney Todd, who’s real name is Benjamin Barker, was married to a beautiful lady named Lucy Barker and together they had a daughter named Johanna. But everything starts to fall about when Judge Turpin falls in love with Lucy. Since Judge Turpin is a judge set in 1800 London he could do anything that he wanted to do to people that had done no crime, with this power Judge Turpin arrested and exiled Benjamin Barker to Australia. Lucy Barker never left her house after her husband was exiled but everyday Judge Turpin would send her flowers and beg her to come outside. One night Lucy did go outside because she had it with Judge Turpin’s and his henchman’s, Beadle Bamford’s, begging. She went to the Judge’s house for a mask party that he was throwing and at the party Judge Turpin rapes Lucy. (Uplifting, right? Wait it gets better.) After that Lucy couldn’t live with herself and she tries to kill herself by drinking poison. Drinking the poison does not kill her but it makes her go insane and forces her to beg on the street for the rest of her life. (Okay well I lied it doesn’t get better.) The Judge raises Lucy’s daughter, Johanna, has his ward instill she is sixteen then he tries to marry her.

After 15 years of being exiled to Australia, Benjamin manages to escape the island. Getting back to London he changes his name to Sweeney Todd and visits his house to find out that the lower level has been turned it a pie shop by a widow named Mrs. Lovett. He enters the shop and Mrs. Lovett is very excited to have a costumer. She brings him a meat pie, which made out of cats she finds running out on the street because the price of meat was very high, and a cup of ale. He asks her the backstory of the building and she tells him the story of the Barker’s and what happened to his wife, Mrs. Lovett tells Sweeney Todd that Lucy drunk poison but she did not tell him that she was dead he just assumed that she was. Mrs. Lovett then brings Sweeney Todd to the upper level of the building where Benjamin Barker ran his barber shop. Mrs.Lovett figures out that Sweeney Todd is Benjamin Barker (probably because he is bad a lying) and gives him some very fine razors that she found when her husband bought the building.

Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett visit the marketplace to look for Judge Turpin but instead they find themselves in a barber competition against an Italian barber named Signor Adolfo Pirelli who claims that he is “the King of Barbers and the Barber of Kings.” They got rounded up in this competition because they were both bad mouthing this product that Pirelli was trying to sell. This product was said to make a bald man grow lovely locks of hair and was advertised by a kid named Tobias Ragg who had lovely long blond hair. (Which was actually a wig. He really has short brown hair.) Overseeing the competition was Judge Turpin’s henchman, Beadle Bamford. After Sweeney Todd won the competition Pirelli realized that Sweeney Todd was Benjamin Barker and him and Tobias visits Sweeney Todd in his “store” on the upper level of Mrs. Lovett’s building. Pirelli turns out to be Daniel O’Higgins (He isn’t even Italian! He is British! That’s boring!)  who was Benjamin’s apprentice when he was a boy. (I guess lying was popular in Victorian London.) Todd then kills O’Higgins to keep his identity a secret and hides his body in a chest.

Mrs. Lovett has this lovely (not) idea that they shouldn’t just get rid of the body but they should use the meat to make meat pies. (Because why not? Am I right?)  So they do and a bunch of new costumers come in to try her delicious meat pies. This gives Todd a new job as well. His job was to get new costumers for his barber shop and kill them so Mrs. Lovett can turn them into meat pies. They both became very popular to the point that Judge Turpin visits them. He went to Todd’s barber shop to have a shave because he just got “engaged” to Johanna ( Johanna did not have a choice.) Johanna has been seeing this young man named Anthony Hope who was on the ship that Todd was on that took them both back to London. (When Anthony first sees Johanna looking out her window, he sings this song called “Johanna” and *sigh* I just love that song so much.) Anthony then comes pretty much busting down Todd’s door telling him that him and Johanna are going to run away that night. Anthony does this right at the moment Sweeney Todd is going to kill Judge Turpin. (Good job Anthony.)  Judge Turpin then leaves telling Todd that he is never again going to have his business.

Judge Turpin then puts Johanna in a girls home so Anthony could not find her. (But News Flash, he does) He goes to the girls home and takes Johanna and makes her dress like a boy so she does not get caught and he brings her to Sweeney Todd’s barber shop to hide. Lucy then runs in the shop to confront Todd about the smell that was coming from the chimney. (Which is the smell of the baking bodies…by the way.)  When Todd walked in the room he find Lucy (which he doesn’t know that it is her) and instead of her confronting him and he confronted her and asked why she was there and she did not say anything. Then Todd heard someone coming up the stairs so he killed Lucy and pulled the level that opened up the floor to the ovens down in the basement. Todd looks over at the chest that Johanna was hiding in to see her creeping out of it. He goes over to her not knowing that it is her either and ask her if she needs a shave and he puts his razor on her throat but then the steps start getting closer and he lets her go. The person making the noise was Judge Turpin and he was angry that Anthony took Johanna. Todd asked him if he could give him a shave to calm him down and the judge agrees. Todd FINALLY gets the chance to kill Judge Turpin.

Mrs. Lovett who is now Mrs. Barker (or Mrs. Todd, whichever floats your boat) sends Tobias down to the basement to make some meat pies and later Sweeney Todd was going to kill him so he didn’t tell anybody about the bodies. Todd and Mrs. Lovett go down to the basement but they don’t find Tobias. Todd looks at the bodies and he looks at Lucy’s figures out that it is her. He gets upset at Mrs. Lovett because she said that Lucy drunk poison but she never said that she was alive. So what does he do? He puts her in an oven. Tobias then comes out of his hiding spot and uses Todd’s razor and kills Todd himself. And thats how it ends.

You are probably hard core questioning why I wrote this and I don’t blame you. I wrote this because I have seen this movie SO many times and I know every song by heart. The day my parents got engaged they went to go see this play…so romantic. (Honestly I just think my dad read that it was a musical and just hoped for the best.) Also my sister themed one of her birthdays after Sweeney Todd. And everyone in my family loves Tim Burton films and this is one of my favorites. So if you finished reading all of this I applaud you because I wasn’t even sure I was going to finish it.










One Comment Add yours

  1. BethCTech says:

    Okay, my favorite part is when you tie this back to your family. I can just see your dad sickly smiling at your mom as the plot becomes clear… I enjoyed the movie but had forgotten much of the details. Johnny Depp is an awesome actor.


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