Tim Burton's "Edward Scissorhands," is an example of what is grotesque in contemporary society.
The 1990's film Edward Scissorhands is an effort by Tim Burton to critique the American society by revealing its faults. Burton does this by utilising a superficially ugly character to uncover the even uglier side of contemporary society. Edward Scissorhands is the touching story of a social outcast and his struggles as he tries to fit in with normal society. The film is a result of Burton's upbringing, with Edward Scissorhands appearing in a number of drawings from his childhood. Burton saw himself as an outcast during his younger years and Edward's story was his way of revealing his internal struggles..
At the beginning of the film, we are introduced to the suburb in which the movie is set. It is very orderly and is superficially nice. The townspeople are a reflection of society, highlighting all the negative parts. As the day begins, the men go off to work and the women stay at home, which in itself is a reference to the society that Tim Burton grew up in. That society relied on the men to earn the money and the women to care for the house. The townspeople see Edward as grotesque due to his scissor hands. In the middle of the film, they take advantage of Edward's talents and he becomes a celebrity. By the end of the film, ironically, the townspeople have reverted to rejecting Edward because of the very reason they celebrated him. This chain of events illustrates contemporary society's tendency to alienate anyone who strays from the norm. Edward is accepted into the town due to his free hedge trimming and hair-cuts, but is quickly rejected. This reflects the fickleness of the townspeople. Peg and Kim are exceptions as they see Edward as a person rather than an oddity.
Jim, the spoilt boyfriend of Peg Boggs's daughter Kim, appears to have grown up as the neighbourhood bully. There is a conflict between Jim and Edward as Kim plays the love interest in both of their lives, and Jim chooses to exploit this as an excuse to pick on Edward.