Escape to the Movies: Alice in Wonderland

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its ironic how movies now dont need good stories to be good. Well maybe they never did but still.

I just went to see this movie the other day and I have to agree that the plot is fairly weak (considering that it's derived from books that basically have no plot at all this isn't really quite a problem) It's the basic story of the unlikely hero in the fairytale realm. But I have to disagree that it was bad. It was not tremendous but it was interesting.

The whole Hatter with Claymore I actually thought was interesting. They gave the Hatter Multiple Personality Disorder his other personality being an angry Scotsman from the looks of it, so it was just a strange call is all in my book. The Plot is not too horribly interesting but the characters are fun, bumping it up from "Average" to at least "Good". The final battle scene was unnecessary. I'm a fan of epic battles, but only as long as the reasoning behind them is sound. This is not sound reasoning :( but at least it was entertaining.

Alice herself is at least a slight variation from the normal Forced Hero sterotype. It's not "I don't want to be the hero" it's more "I really don't understand what's going on". I'd have to say all in all it was a very enjoyable movie, I don't know what Movie Bob has against it but I would at least give it a 7/10.

Went and saw this. Had been looking forward to it for a long time. Wanted a faithful re-imagining of Lewis Carroll's masterpiece. And that's exactly what I got. If you like Alice in Wonderland in the way it should be appreciated (IMO, a sense of childish wonder, not a stuck-up critical view), then you will like this film. IMO.

Meh ill wait and see it for myself i find moviebob to be very hit and miss and over-analytical for the sake of being analytical, like in the case of reccomending that piece of utter trash boondock saints 2.

I rather enjoyed it actually. Every character had, well, a full character. It wasn't like the regular Alice in Wonderland which I also love but it wasn't as fulfilling. It was like a drug trip where it was nice while it lasted but afterward I was hungry. This Alice is still quirky and wonderful, but it ties it all together and I guess kind of makes it more real. And that takes some real Burton magic. Taking things that are really unfathomable in the real world and giving it a human face. That's the focus of everything he does. Taking things people don't understand, don't want to understand, or just can't understand, and putting it into perspectives. He did the same thing here.

Also I'm surprised you say Anne Hathaway did well, because I thought she was by far the most mediocre performance. I think the White Queen could've done with something more subtle and yet Anne exaggerated the performance and she did that weird thing with her hand that I never really got. I like those little physical ticks many actors use in their acting. But it has to have relevance. As usual, Depp and Carter, loved it. Depp, as I saw it, kind of mixed every character that he ever did into one which creates this kind of giant, bipolar mess, just as the Mad Hatter should be. And he does an Irish accent. That's awesome. That girl with the long name that I don't remember, you know, that plays Alice? She was a little bland but then next to the other characters, kind of hard not to seem bland being the only sane one.

And really, the biggest problem I've heard is the violence for the rating. And really, hasn't Tim Burton and his movies been around long enough that parents have realized that just because his movie is rated PG doesn't mean it won't scare the crap out your kids? Did you see Nightmare Before Christmas? That's rated PG too but of course not every kid can handle it, especially the parts where they almost kill Santa. It's not like Burton's movies are hard to spot either. I do have to agree that the graphics were pretty much as I expected. And I love it that way.

It has to be better than the latest SyFy channel train-wreck.

Thanks for the review, MovieBob.

I was excited when I first saw posters for this film (thinking it was an adaptation of this Alice). Then I espied "Disney" in the corner.

At least the game is supposed to get a sequel.

I saw it recently. Wish I had not. It just didn't work out for me, I dunno.

At last I've found something to disagree with you on! I love your reviews, but I disagree with some but not all of the points you made. I agree that the movie is a little better when it ambles around a bit and that transformation of this into some sort of epic battle at the end is sort of awkward. I also agree that Johnny Depp wielding a broadsword was out of place and disappointing, though I was distracted by the recent revelation that they had brought Christopher Lee in to do the voice of the Jabberwocky, which had about two lines, maybe he got a discount as a favor for putting him in Charlie in the Chocolate Factory and Corpse Bride, but it would probably still have been cheaper to bring in Kevin Micheal Richardson (no, not Kramer, he's a voice actor, look it up) rather than spend the money on a cameo that very few people would spot. Thus I missed a little bit of the fight between the Hatter and whats-his-name, but what I saw of it I wasn't that impressed with, maybe it was everything else that was going on or maybe it's because I've been taking classes in stage combat for a year and a half now, but at the end of the movie I had to be reminded by the people I watched it with that he had done anything with his sword besides poke the Jabberwocky's tail. I was mainly concerned with confirming my suspicions about several voice actors and wondering who did the soundtrack, it's always Elfman when Tim Burton directs, but I wanted to know because when ever Alice rode across a field the soundtrack was about one note away from being sued by the guy who did the soundtrack to Batman Begins, oh it wasn't as fast paced, but the melody is really similar at that bit to whenever Batman is sitting on a skyscraper looking thoughtful, or perhaps just bored.

But enough about what I agree on, time to disagree. While I see what you mean on some aspects, I think you may have taken the "remaking 80s cartoons" thing too far. It may be just me, but when I go into a remake with no expectations I enjoy it a lot more. I want to clarify here, I have not read the book or it's been so long that I barely remember it, I haven't seen the whole Disney cartoon in perhaps a decade or so (though I had made plans to watch the copy my mother bought on DVD 2 years ago and never opened before I saw this film, I never got around to it) and the most recognizable thing I saw in this film was the Jabberwocky poem, having read that as recently as High School. So I went into the film with only vague recollections of what the original Alice was about, and enjoyed it. There were bits that jogged my memory, such as the bit at the beginning with all the growing and shrinking to get through that door, and bits I were pretty sure weren't in the original story, such as the cat-monkey-thing that's claws make wounds that get gangrene really fast, but in Wonderland gangrene apparently translates to "a bit swollen and a little red." Having heard people complain about it going to be a horrible atrocity (one of which being you, Bob) and seen Alice holding a sword in previews, I was braced for a Lord of the Rings style action film with Johnny Depp jumping in to reference the original book every five minutes. Only to find that in the end I found the actual battle to be a bit lacking and that otherwise I had quite enjoyed the whole experience. So I guess all there is left to say is thanks. Thank you Movie Bob and others for saying how bad this was so I could be pleasantly surprised.

I think if anything, I would complain that the amount they build up the entire "Alice has to kill the Jabberwocky but she doesn't want to" thing is a little disproportionate to how long and exciting the actual battle is. The end battle between Alice and the Jabberywocky, the Hatter and the tall guy and these two epic armies came up a little short for something that was mentioned constantly after Alice's first five minutes in Wonderland. Perhaps Tim Burton likes the word Jabberwocky, because the characters certainly take every opportunity mention it and why it is important. There's also the fact that there is some sort of implied similarity between everyone expecting Alice to marry the man at the beginning and everyone expecting her to kill the Jabberwocky, but since she goes after the Jabberwocky with little argument except for the occasional "I'm not slaying anything, and I couldn't if I wanted to," it just sort of feels like they forgot about it until afterwards, at which point it doesn't seem as important as trying to figure out whether or not they are really trying to squeeze in a romantic subplot between the Hatter and Alice in the last 10 minutes, something I'm still not sure they did on purpose, since nothing happens and only 3 lines even hint that that is what is going on, albeit heavily so. The movie does this kind of thing with a few other points as well, I really thought they were going to reveal that her crazy aunt had gone to Wonderland as well, but she just calls her crazy, at which point I wonder why they included her at all except for a few jokes and to make Alice's ending "this is how it is going to be" speech slightly longer, a speech which it only just now occurs to me is their attempt to wrap up the "what is expected" thing, meaning it was either so subtle or so much of it got cut that it didn't quite work for me. It would have been nice to have an actual battle after the Hatter's "death to the red queen" speech too.

Speaking of which, as I previously mentioned I haven't seen the cartoon or read the book recently, so can anyone tell me if the Hatter was Scottish in any of the other versions? Or was this just an excuse to give Depp a claymore at the end? It's just too bad he didn't pull it out of a hat, or make a hat that folded into a sword, or something else that would be nice and ridiculous.

I felt as I watched it that there was a good movie hidden in this film, but the bare bones of the story and how weakly it held together made it into this.

Yup, just got back from seeing this yesterday. One word: underwhelming. I can honestly say that I prefer the 1903 version over the 2010 version, let alone the classic Disney version. Sure there was plenty to like in this movie but there was plenty more to dislike. I absolutely could not stand Helena Bonham Carter as the Red Queen for instance and I usually love her roles. I disliked Anne Hathaway's White Queen as well.

ouch harsh harsh words moviebob. imo tim burton movies are just that. If you go into them expecting to see alice in wonderland or any thing the film seems to be you are sorely disappointed. However if you go to see a tim burton film it works just fine. Eh but what do I know.

Seems pretty spot on with the review, although the delivery seems like Bob really wants to be Yahtzee.
Just saying

GothmogII:

TheRealCJ:

Aura Guardian:
Loved the special message. I've hated a lot of Tim Burton's movies expect for one. Sweeny Todd. And I've have yet to watch a Nightmare before Christmas and refuse too. Judging by your review, this is crap. Thank you moviebob

Ah, but you have to remember: The Nightmare Before Christmas belongs to Tim Burton in name only.

He had the vauge, basic original idea, but beyond that, he didn't write it or direct it. Despite the creepy fanboyism that exists for the movie, it's actually one of the better non-Disney* children's films out there.

*Yes, I know it's Disney NOW, but it was originally released by Touchstone, because Disney proper thought that it wasn't keeping in line with it's other children's films at the time, take what you will from that.

Yup, like how the original Tron was Touchstone too but the sequal's got the Disney logo glued to it.

Edit: What am I thinking? Tron was Buena Vista, heh. Still Disney though, humm.

The people that I know who saw it were raving about it. In a good way. :P but i suppose it's a matter of taste.

Also, to Gothmog: is your avatar from what i think it's from?

movie-bob... i disagree.
i think it is a nice movie that is based up on the original, but tells a story about a girl who has to make a hard decision.
but instead of thinking it over , she escapes into her childhood perfect-fun-world.
but if you look close enough, you might see the connection between wonderland and the real world.
most of it gets solved at the end.
by the way, those people sitting behind me (in cinema) were thinking about what they could eat when the credits started.
i hate them, because they did not even understand the movie.
it is a movie about fantasy, and i think fighting your own fear in order not to do something you do not want to do, but everybody expects you to.
(is that grammar correct?)
alice lives in a world with absolute maners where you have to follow a lot of rules, even if you do not want to.
and at one very important point , where she has to make a hard decision she flees/escapes into her childhood-dream / imaginary world with no rules at all.
everything is not impossible.
it might be more action filled and different from the alice-book, but it makes sense, because "Alice" in the movie is not the same "Alice" she was in the book, she is much older in the movie , and this time she has to fight her own fear in form of her childhood-nightmare, while looking at her situation from the perspective of her inner child .
everything in "WONDERLAND" represents something in her reality.

i think that 's enough.
if you like "johny depp" or that girl from "plötzlich prinzessin" or "alice" the book / cartoon = watch the movie!
and if you rely one anybodys oppinion, who tells you "the film is crap" , don't see the movie!!
not even on Dvd nor internet via illegal download!
whitch is by the way "ILLEGAL"!
in case you didn't know.

have a nice life as long as you live.
byé

Lmao at the intro. XD Look at me! LOOK AT MEEEE!

Seems like all the critics hate the movie, but everyone else loves it. :P
Personally, I thought it was great. A little too much Mad Hatter and not enough Chesire(sp?) Cat but the rest of the movie was pretty enjoyable.

Wow, for once MovieBob doesn't know his facts. Of course it seems like a vast majority of people don't that he's wrong either.

This book is NOT based off of Alice in Wonderland, it only happens to have the same title from the same series of books. It's based off of Through the Looking-Glass. Thus one of MovieBob's rants about the Red Queen being the Queen of Hearts isn't right because in the book she IS the Red Queen. And the fact that the book is taking place on a giant chess board and there is a fight going on between the White Queen and the Red Queen in which Alice takes part in.

I didn't think the movie was 'ubertacular,' but I did find it entertaining and I think that is what truly counts.

FrossetMareritt:
Wow, for once MovieBob doesn't know his facts. Of course it seems like a vast majority of people don't that he's wrong either.

This book is NOT based off of Alice in Wonderland, it only happens to have the same title from the same series of books. It's based off of Through the Looking-Glass. Thus one of MovieBob's rants about the Red Queen being the Queen of Hearts isn't right because in the book she IS the Red Queen. And the fact that the book is taking place on a giant chess board and there is a fight going on between the White Queen and the Red Queen in which Alice takes part in.

I didn't think the movie was 'ubertacular,' but I did find it entertaining and I think that is what truly counts.

Once again, A brilliant review by ole Bob. It didn't surprise me that it's awful, it's pretty much everything I imagined it would be.
I have to say I actually prefer Escape to the Movies with: to Zero Punctuation. I know they're two completely different things, but Bob doesn't just slander something because it's popular.

Resin213:
Seems pretty spot on with the review, although the delivery seems like Bob really wants to be Yahtzee.
Just saying

He's always that astute and to the point in every review. If you've seen any of his other reviews you'd know this is nothing new.

Benjeezy:

GothmogII:

TheRealCJ:

Ah, but you have to remember: The Nightmare Before Christmas belongs to Tim Burton in name only.

He had the vauge, basic original idea, but beyond that, he didn't write it or direct it. Despite the creepy fanboyism that exists for the movie, it's actually one of the better non-Disney* children's films out there.

*Yes, I know it's Disney NOW, but it was originally released by Touchstone, because Disney proper thought that it wasn't keeping in line with it's other children's films at the time, take what you will from that.

Yup, like how the original Tron was Touchstone too but the sequal's got the Disney logo glued to it.

Edit: What am I thinking? Tron was Buena Vista, heh. Still Disney though, humm.

The people that I know who saw it were raving about it. In a good way. :P but i suppose it's a matter of taste.

Also, to Gothmog: is your avatar from what i think it's from?

Well, I just saw it last night. It was, as I recalled right then, pretty. Vapid of course, but pretty. Reminded me a lot in tone of American McGee's Alice though obviously with the violence turned down to almost nil. I don't know, I this is the only adaptation of Through the Looking Glass I've seen so I've nothing to compare it to, but, it doesn't hold up well for me.

It's also a little odd that Burton's one is called Alice in Wonderland at all since it bears little relation beyond a few scenes and references to the original book, leaning more towards as mentioned above Through the Looking Glass.

Only huge dissapointment was the Jabberwock. You give it Christopher Lee's voice and have the audacity to:

!! What a waste of Mr.Lee.

(As for the avatar, yup, yer gazing on Satan. (Possibly no relation.))

I haven't seen the movie yet, I will tonight, but I can't understand all this "It deviates from the book ! Burn it!" sentiment. As I understand it, it's a reinterpretation of Wonderland, I image that it's supposed be unlike the book or else it would be a mere uninspired remake.

Now I haven't seen the movie yet, so it might also be dissapoiting in it's own right, but citing the different approach as something bad .. ?

And yeah this is the first time I've listened to MovieBob and it really felt like an attempt to mimic Yatzhee's style. I did laugh hard with the "Because the good guy always needs a magic sword and a destiny line", that's just so damn true :)

It's also a little odd that Burton's one is called Alice in Wonderland at all since it bears little relation beyond a few scenes and references to the original book, leaning more towards as mentioned above Through the Looking Glass.

The title 'Alice in Wonderland' is much more known than 'Through the looking glass'. It's pretty logical from a commercial point of view.

Too bad he's so negative, because it actually is a great movie. The digital 3D doesn't really ad much to the movie, but it's worth the extra few bucks.
The original Alice in Wonderland also was about Alice being pushed around, so I don't know why it's such a big thing now, since the entire thing is about her thinking she's in a dream, and more or less waiting it out.

I've absolutely despised the story Alice in Wonderland, so it's really no surprise to me that this one was no better than the book or the Disney movie.

Just came back from seeing it:

It was okay. That's all I can say about it really. Not good, not bad, just okay. It looked very very pretty, but the atmosphere I was expecting wasn't really there. Perhaps because the movie felt so hasty, like it was a quick recap .. I can't properly translate it into words :p

The ending sucked though.

I enjoyed it. Didn't resemble the origonal story much except for the characters. I think the whole war thing made me think a bit too much of Narnia which doesn't exactly fit in with the Alice in Wonderland universe. Here's hoping the next Tim Burton movie will be much better.

Oh yeah.. friends of mine where complaining that the Break Dancing was awkward. It was a bit odd.

Just popping in to say thank you, Movie Bob, for saving me the money I would've spent on this movie, and the frustration of finding out too late that it's yet another Hollywood bastardization of a book classic.

I blame disney, simple as.
Tim Burton's done some good stuff, but anything in that film that reminds you it's a kids movie is a reminder of the shit parts.
Also, undeniably a shoe-in for best costume design for next years oscars?

LiquidGrape:

Aura Guardian:
Loved the special message. I've hated a lot of Tim Burton's movies expect for one. Sweeny Todd. And I've have yet to watch a Nightmare before Christmas and refuse too. Judging by your review, this is crap. Thank you moviebob

I love it when people make dogmatic assumptions.
At any rate, the general consensus seems to imply that the action climax is unwarranted.
When I've seen it myself, I'll form my opinion.

- Sweeney Todd, by the way, was Burton's most drab and uninspired film to date.

^this^

So in other words it's a crappy adaptation of the American McGee game only the Mad Hatter is a good guy instead of a demented clockwork doctor?

EDIT: Oh, and kid friendly. I wouldn't show that game to anyone under 15 >>'

I got upgraded from a 2-D presentation to a 3-D one when I saw it. First time in my life I'd have rather not been given 'better' treatment. The movie was disappointing, but watchable, plus the half baked 3-D kept pulling me away from any level of immersion.

i watched this in the theaters yesterday, and i thought it was fun. ya, the end action scene felt kind of out of place, but i really liked all the characters and acting and the film looks gorgeous, which makes up for a lot of the bad bits, for me anyway.

...

Skeleon:
Huh, as I actually like his take on Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory, I might like this movie too, I guess.

I liked it myself. Faithful and unique at the same time, though Tim should break off his Johnny Depp dependancy.

I find it interesting at how many people base their opinions on a movie because of what a critic says. Make your own opinions, people! Don't let someone else define it for you.

Anyway, I've seen this movie....how many times, now? It's a great film that's not only artistically wonderful but also has a great cast. True, Mia was a bit bland in the beginning, but she got better as it progressed. I've not read the book or seen the other Disney version in quite some time (if at all). Bob has his opinion about it, and he's entitled to it. To say the least, it's just a movie of great fun that, however dark it may seem and the Jabberwocky fight scene being a little much for the younglings, people of all ages can enjoy it. For me, it's one of my favorite Burton films, along with Sweeney Todd and Sleepy Hollow.

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