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PHOTOGRAPHY

ALICE IN WONDERLAND (2010)

DVD Review by David Blackwell

 

DETAILS:  109 minutes, three featurettes

VIDEO:  1.78:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)

AUDIO:  English 5.1, French 5.1, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround, English 2.0 DVS

Subtitles:  English SDH, French, Spanish

 

STUDIO:  Walt Disney Pictures/ Team Todd/ Roth Films/ the Zanuck Company/ Tim Burton Productions

Theatrical RELEASE DATE:  3-5-2010

DVD RELEASE DATE:  6-1-2010

 

STARRING Mia Wasikowska (Alice), Johnny Depp (Mad Hatter), Helena Bonham Carter (Red Queen), Anne Hathaway (White Queen), Crispin Glover (Stayne), Stephen Fry (voice of Cheshire Cat), Alan Rickman (voice of Blue Caterpillar)

WRITTEN by Linda Woolverton (screenplay), based on the books by Lewis Carroll

Directed by Tim Burton

ANALYSIS:

Alice is having the same nightmare for years about her trip to Wonderland.  She thought it was all a dream.  She is about to become engaged to a Duke when she decides to follow a White Rabbit in a waistcoat down the rabbit hole into Underland or Wonderland.   She is faced with a world she thought was a dream.   The Red Queen has taken over the place.   Everyone hopes Alice can step up and slay the Jaberwocky to end the Red Queen’s reign of terror.   The Mad Hatter is still quite mad as a hatter while Alice seems clueless and confused as usual.

 

ALICE IN WONDERLAND is a visual delight.   Tim Burton puts it all into the visuals.   I do wish he had a better script for the film.   It seems like a confused girl who needs to make a choice about her destiny while Johnny Depp (I mean Mad Hatter) steals the show in every scene he is in (and one wonders if Tim Burton would have been happier about making a film about the Mad Hatter instead of Alice).   The Chesire Cat is cute with his hat stealing habits while the White Queen is a prissy pacificist.   The movie does mine the source material for this new story, but I wished ALICE IN WONDERLAND was more of an adventure to be taken on.  It is just a visual film with not much of an exciting story.  It is forgettable entertainment that makes you wish that Alice and the Hatter had kissed each other in addition to Tim Burton making the film about the Hatter instead.

 

SECOND OPINION (after viewing movie again on DVD):

I like the film a little bit more on the second viewing.   It explores the theme of finding oneself even if it takes a fantastic journey to Underland to do it.

 

SPECIAL FEATURES:

 

THE MAD HATTER-  the process Johnny Depp went through to play the Mad Hatter  (his performance and how they enlarged his eyes slightly via computer) and where the phrase “Mad As A Hatter” came from (Hatters went crazy from the mercury in the hat glue).

FINDING ALICE-   cast and the director talk about Alice the character and the actress who plays her.

EFFECTING WONDERLAND-  all the visual effects that went into creating CGI characters, costumes, and environments.  ALICE IN WONDERLAND was shot against green screen for most of the film.

The Blu-ray has additional featurettes-

THE FUTTERWACKEN DANCE, THE RED QUEEN, THE WHITE QUEEN, TIME-LAPSE: SCLUPTING THE RED QUEEN, SCORING WONDERLAND, STUNTS OF WONDERLAND, MAKING THE PROPER SIZE, CAKES OF WONDERLAND,  and TEA PARTY PROPS.

 

The Blu-ray/ DVD combo has a digital copy of ALICE IN WONDERLAND on the third disc.

 

FINAL ANALYSIS:   Tim Burton and Alice In Wonderland fans will love this visual treat.  I do wish more of the featurettes were on the DVD instead of just three.

 

This DVD review is (c)5-24-2010 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission.  Send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com