Fellow Movie Lovers
ALICE IN WONDERLAND
Enchanting! This is a movie that will please all audiences, even those gallivanting at Olympic speed into their dotage. Alice as a young adult, trapped in a stilted Victorian world tumbles once again into Wonderland, where she finds her old friends and nemesis.
She blossoms in three dimension; the glasses, unlike Avatar, stimulated the experience, enhancing not hindering the process.
The unparalleled imagination of Tim Burton (you can trace its origins at his exhibition at MOMA, in New York City) takes Lewis Carroll’s (Charles Dodgson 1832-1898) Alice into unchartered waters, the surreal magical world of Wonderland is unchanged only Alice has matured. Mia Wasikowska (gone are the days of generic “stage” names) an Australian actress is beguiling and believable as Alice; Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter is masterful as the disenfranchised, raffish but charming catalyst for the coming of age Alice. Depp the most recognized actor of the twenty first century adds another level to his monument of courage and genius of interpretation. Edward Scissorhands (1990, directed by Tim Burton) was the first flicker of magnitude, a glimpse of his preciousness yet to be unveiled.
Helena Bonham Carter (Burton’s significant other) is fabulous as the Red Queen; even her “off with his head” has not staled; she reigns supreme as the Queen of the Weird!
Anne Hathaway, a fine actress, was as the role required, too saccharine as the White Queen; her characterization reached the tooth ache level.
Alice Liddell (1852-1934) was the exquisite muse for Lewis Carroll’s Alice. She was one of ten children, her father Henry, was Dean of Christ Church. Lewis Carroll, a photographer, mathematician, Anglican clergyman and author was a friend of the family and succumbed to the blitzkrieg of story requests from the engaging children, Alice in particular.
Lewis Carroll said that “everything’s got a moral, if only you can find it”. Tim Burton should allow us to follow Alice in this quest: as a wife, a mother (a tumble into Wonderland might help her survive the teenage years) into the declining years, where unlike Peter Pan and more like Wendy she discovers and achieves the prophesy so propitiously predicted; wisdom comes from recognizing, embracing life’s vicissitudes and victories, learning and aging with equanimity.
THREE 1/2 STARS! (Out of Five)
For Now …………Peneflix