Alice in Wonderland
Your RatingCreate an account or log in to rate this movie
It's pretty impossible to argue with the fact that if anyone was going to do a reworking of Alice in Wonderland, it should be Tim Burton. His genius in the field of making the dark and sadistic so gleefully accessible and brilliant is absolutely unparalleled by anyone, past or present. Tinkering with a classic story, though, is usually a pretty dangerous prospect for any director, no matter how skilled they are at what they do. But, considering Disney's original animated version of the film left out a huge chunk of the story and invented some things in order to make it more 'family friendly', the notion of trying to top the original isn't an out of this world one.
Tim Burton has been re-imagining and re-creating films for years, and his experience in the art of fusing his own twisted imagination with the likes of classic tales seem to be where his talent shines the best. In the film, his colorful representation of the world the younger Alice referred to as "wonderland" is so well done, that it would almost be acceptable if the story that it was based on was less than stellar. But since the story is equally as fascinating and well-executed, it makes for a non-stop carnival of moodscapes and funny dialogue that end up making an altogether fascinating film.
Though the film does feature more than a few Burton mainstays --Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter have been in pretty much every one of his films -- it does introduce some wonderful new faces. Mia Wasikowska is great as a post-teenage Alice, Crispin Glover is fantastic as the Knave of Hearts, and Anne Hathawayputs all of her Disney Princess training to good use for her role of the White Queen. The acting is superb overall, as everyone brings their own personalities and idiosyncrasies to the table. The voice contributions of the animated characters are just as perfect.Stephen Fry and Alan Rickman use their small screen time to make their characters unforgettable, and even Matt Lucas is hilarious as the voices of both TweedleDee and TweedleDum.
It's not really necessary to analyze the plot line of a movie like this, so it won't be done. What matters is if the film lives up to all the hype and potential surrounding it, and the answer to that is a resounding yes. Even the cheesy fight scene at the end when Alice finally takes up her destined cause and fights the blasted Jabberwocky is enjoyable, despite the fact that it's probably the most predictable thing Tim Burton has ever put on screen in his career. The world he creates is far superior to even the beautiful depictions of decay that made Batman and Sweeney Todd the gothic masterpieces they are, mostly because each color matches the symbolism and contrasting moods of the film perfectly.
Overall, Alice in Wonderland fares much better than many of the flurry of remakes hitting the cinemas as of late. It's thoroughly watchable, and like the best movies for children features many bits and pieces that are tailor-made for the adults in the audience. Chances are, anyone under the age of 15 will probably miss out on a lot of the jokes, but that makes it all the more special. Disney has been known for putting out some racy stuff in its day, and this ranks with the best of them. The bottom line is that this movie is definitely worth seeing, and definitely worth owning.