Tim Burton

Analysing Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas Parts 4 and 5

Posted by Speakeasy News > Friday 27 October 2023 > Ready to Use

We are gradually publishing an 8-part analysis of the 1993 animated film The Nightmare Before Christmas. Here are parts 4 and 5. We'll be publishing further parts during the autumn so you can study the film with A2-level pupils in class.

The film, directed by Henry Selick and written by Tim Burton, focuses on the King of Halloween Town, Jack Skellington. He and all the town's citizens, celebrate Halloween every day of the year. But Jack becomes bored with Halloween and when he stumbles upon Christmas Town, he decides to celebrate Christmas instead.

Part 4 of the analysis focuses on the soup Sally prepares to put Dr Finkelstein to sleep so she can go out to help Jack, and in Part 5, Jack hasn't entirely understood the concept of Christmas.

Vocabulary and grammar

  • adjectives (moral portrait)
  • cause and effect
  • genitives
  • writing recipes
  • adjectives to describe moods
  • Christmas vocabulary
  • musical instruments
  • expressing worry and reassurance


  • Halloween
  • Frankenstein
  • Christmas songs

For more on a Tim Burton theme, check out our resource on the TV series Wednesday.

If you like working with long-form fiction with your pupils, check out our new Reading Guides anglais collection. Each guide offers substantial extracts from a well-known novel in English for young readers and lots of activities to help pupils understand them. The first two titles are Gangsta Granny by David Walliams and Number the Stars by Lois Lowry. Find out more about the collection and watch the collection director Corinne Escales walk you through using the Reading Guides in class.