We all remember the tale of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow with Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman. Well, nobody tells it better than Tim Burton with the movie Sleepy Hollow. Johnny Depp stars as Ichabod Crane, but in this film he’s not a schoolmaster, he’s a constable. How’s that for an edge?
Crane is more intent on using scientific methods and examinations to solve crimes instead of medieval torture devices. So he gets sent to the town of Sleepy Hollow to investigate mysterious murders, which were all caused by decapitation.
Crane asks about suspects, but he’s told that the killer is the Headless Horseman (Christopher Walken), a Hessian mercenary who never speaks but has teeth as sharp as his sword. The Horseman gets killed, but has risen again. Crane doesn’t believe that old story though.
The Horseman strikes again and slices off another victim’s head with one slice of his sword like a hot knife through butter. I must admit, that Horseman would make a great executioner for the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland, since they both have a thing for head slicing.
Crane now believes in the Horseman when he comes face to face with him. Since the Horseman never kills Crane, he realizes that none of the Horseman’s victims are random. So Crane tries to figure out the connection. But first, with the help of his new assistant Young Masbath (Marc Pickering), Crane investigates the source, which is the Horseman’s grave, but when they arrive they find something more. The Tree of the Dead, where the Horseman was buried, is a gateway between two worlds. The tree also bleeds, so Crane chops into it with a small axe. With each chop, the tree spits out blood all over him. Somebody get this guy a wet nap.
Within the tree are all of the heads the Horseman took. In the grave, the Horseman’s skull is missing. Whoever took it must’ve also brought the killer back. The Horseman is still only a mercenary, even in death.
After the Horseman kills yet again, Brom (Casper Van Dien) tries to fight him. The Horseman does defend himself, but walks away in annoyance as if he was saying, “Leave me alone. I’m busy.” Crane had tried to warn Brom, but he didn’t listen and got killed. Then the Horseman is all, “Finally. Now I can get out of here.”
Soon the pieces all come together, which is based on inheriting a fortune and eliminating all of the other possible heirs. Everyone involved was a target for the Horseman. However, Crane ends up suspecting his love interest Katrina (Christina Ricci) because she can cast spells. But is Katrina really the mastermind behind it all?
This was a good horror mystery movie. Having Ichabod Crane as an investigator works a whole lot better than as a schoolmaster who was possibly killed by the Headless Horseman.