I don't watch TV ever or go to the movies that often, so all I knew about this one was that it was animated and Tim Burton was involved. (I didn't know until after that Tim Burton didn't write or direct, only produced.)
I liked it! It was very short, but I think that is actually a boon in this movie's case. The animation is FANTASTIC, gorgeous and spooky, and very detailed. Steampunk bliss throughout.
The movie itself is pretty dang scary. I wouldn't take little kids to this one. I'm pretty sure this movie would have freaked me the fuck out when I was a kid, anyway.
The characters are simple but endearing. The plot is equally simple, and a little bit of a stretch, but if you can get past the fact that it is fiction and obviously it wouldn't happen (because it takes place in the past and it didn't), it's a pretty enjoyable flick. I can see how some people would feel the ending is cheesy or something thrown together and campy, and it kind of is. But if you go to the movie expecting a lot of awesome animation, a lot of action, and some pretty intensely unsettling spookiness and creep factor, you shouldn't be too disappointed. :)