Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Alice in Wonderland....

....I watched this in 2D, which was a little frustrating, particularly when you can see scenes that have been very deliberately directed to take advantage of the effect. I put that to one side pretty quickly, but was impatient with what seemed like a pedestrian opening fifteen minutes or so, in which I also initially failed to warm to the Alice character, (played by Mia Wasikowska).

The Tim Burton directed film stays true to the 19th Century novel by Lewis Carroll, but that is perhaps part of the problem. This isn't a bad film at all, in fact, once it gets going, is thoroughly enjoyable. But it doesn't seem to give enough, perhaps it's even one dimensional - the Burton trademarks, the quirks are few and far between.

Johnny Depp seems very comfortable in his role as the Mad Hatter. His make up and direction are fun, but his accent, (where he chooses Scottish), seems like a parody and not always consistent. The real star, for me, is Helena Bonham Carter. Playing the Red Queen, (meant to be the least likeable character), she is infectious, funny and very watchable.

At times the film reminded me of one from my youth, a cult 80s classic - The Never Ending Story. I loved that then, and I'd be surprised if kids didn't love this film now. Particularly with humorous touches added in Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee, both played by Matt Lucas, (with the help of some computer graphics).

It is a fantastical romp, perhaps let down slightly by Burton not being brave enough, but kept afloat with enough fun, action and great lines from the increasingly likeable Alice like, "Sometimes I believe six impossible things before breakfast." (But of course Burton has Carroll to thank for that).

See it. But perhaps in 3D. And perhaps with your kids. If you have any!

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