Review: ALICE IN WONDERLAND - Nothing Special


Director: Tim Burton

Cast: Mia Wasikowska, Marton Csokas, Anne Hathaway, Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Crispin Glover, Matt Lucas


ALICE IN WONDERLAND, a magical and imaginative twist on some of the most beloved stories of all time. 19—year—old Alice, who returns to the whimsical world she first encountered as a young girl, reuniting with her childhood friends: the White Rabbit, Tweedledee and Tweedledum, the Dormouse, the Caterpillar, the Cheshire Cat, and of course, the Mad Hatter. Alice embarks on a fantastical journey to find her true destiny and end the Red Queen’s reign of terror. 


Tim Burton has made some great films in his day, there’s no doubt that the guy has an incredible imagination, and he’s proved that he’s got some great talent. Unfortunately, his Alice in Wonderland film was a very mediocre film. I didn’t hate the movie, but I didn’t like it either. I walked out of this film with an indifferent attitude. I was expecting a great Tim Burton film, but in the end it was the Tron Legacy trailer that stole the show.

There was nothing in Alice in Wonderland that made me go, “Wow! That was awesome!” Nothing stood out, it was just a very plain film with the formula look of Tim Burton. The film didn’t spark any type of emotion within me, I didn’t care for the characters, I didn’t really laugh, I didn’t care about the story being told because it wasn’t told in a way that interested me. I enjoyed the original animated Disney film better. It was much more fun, wacky, insane and organized than this live action version. 

I liked the style that Burton brought to the film and there were a couple cool little scenes, like Alice crossing a moat full of decapitated heads. Most of the film was like Tim Burton wanted to go dark and tell a great story, but I think because it was Disney he was forced to hold back what he really wanted to do. 

The special effects in the film along with the 3D was incredibly distracting. Crispin Glover’s character with the full CGI body annoyed the hell out of me. Then the 3D conversion that was done on the film really didn’t work for me, it was off. The only reason I went to see it in 3D in the first place was to see the Tron Legacy trailer. Otherwise, I would have watched it in 2D. 

The acting in the film was okay, I enjoyed the performances of Mia Wasikowska as Alice and Helena Bonham Carter as the Red Queen. But I wasn’t sure about Johnny Depp’s performance of the Mad Hatter. It was fun at first, but as the movie went on I just got tired of it, and I couldn’t figure out what he and Burton were trying to accomplish with the character, I thought it was really odd when the Hatter would all of a sudden break out into a Scottish accent. I didn’t enjoy his performance as much as I thought I would.

The film completely lost me near the end of the film when the Mad Hatter broke out into this incredibly stupid dance with this awful music that was so out of place and so ridiculous. I don’t think anyone in the audience knew how to react to it either. They built this dance up throughout the movie with certain characters talking about it, but it could have done without it and no one would have missed it. 

Like I said, its not like I hated the film, but I didn’t like it either. It’s a film I wouldn’t have gone out of my way to see if I knew what it would have been like. There are a few people I know that did like the movie, and it ended up meeting their expectations. I understand that there’s an audience out there that will like this movie. It just didn’t live up to what I was expecting. It’s definitely a movie that kids should really enjoy, after all it was made for them. I thought Tim Burton was a perfect match to bring this story to the big screen, but I think it could have been done so much better in the hands of another director.

If you’ve seen the movie, please let me know what you thought! If you liked the movie tell me why.

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