July 9, 2010
Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland
I finally caved in and signed up for a Netflix membership. My wife actually did, but I am fully enjoying the benefits of the membership. Lately (and by lately I mean the last several years) I find it difficult to catch a movie at the theater, so I get to see a lot of movies when they are released on DVD. Recently I watched the Tim Burton version of Alice in Wonderland. Before I give my opinion on the film, let me just say that I am a big Lewis Carroll fan. I have thoroughly enjoyed both Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass since I was in my youth. The Jabberwocky used to give me nightmares when I was little.
I had high hopes for Tim Burton's version of Alice. I was aware of the fact Alice was supposed to be nineteen in the movie, but I was not prepared for the return-of-the-heroine twist. It smacked too much of Steven Spielberg's failed movie Hook, where Peter Pan has grown up and forgotten his roots. If only this movie had the same coherency as Hook, not to say that Hook was highly coherent. Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland was all over the place. It was some strange twist between the books Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass with the movies Shrek and The Lord of the Rings trilogy thrown in.
Needless to say, my high hopes were dashed, and surprisingly soon into the movie. I felt the whole story falling apart once Alice made her way through the little door and crossed into Wonderland. Even the acting might of Johnny Depp was not enough to save the script that tried to be too much, becoming a jack of all trades and master of none.