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DVD Review - Alice in Wonderland

Contributor:
George Dryburgh
George Dryburgh

I am really not the greatest Tim Burton fan. In fact with the exception of Sweeney Todd and a couple of other lesser known productions, I find his movies downright creepy. So naturally when my boss told me I should watch the Burton interpretation of Alice in Wonderland so that I could make recommendations, I had less than high expectations.

To put it bluntly I adored it. Burton's Alice is in fact a sequel to the original tale which provides a fresh take on the story while cleverly incorporating the events of the original. A 19 year old Alice escapes from her strictly pre-arranged life and returns to the world she visited as a child, only to find out that she is the one destined to lead a revolution against the evil Red Queen who has since taken control of all of Wonderland.

One of the things that I tend to dislike about Burton is his trademark weird and wacky film style which in this case perfectly illustrates Wonderland as it should be. I can't begin to describe how visually stunning Wonderland is. The color scape is fantastically vivid but my favorite part has to be the Red Queens soldiers. I found the cold, red, metal playing cards with tiny glowing eyes particularly cool and well imagined.

Little known Mia Wasikowska is an enchanting Alice, blessed with the combo of being very attractive and a seemingly decent actress. Yet as with most of Burton's flicks the spotlight falls on his favorite, the Mad Hatter himself, Johnny Depp. Don't get me wrong, Depp is on top form; but I dislike that in all the marketing the Mad Hatter is mad out as the lead role thus stealing much of Miss Wasikowska's thunder. 

Alice is a thoroughly entertaining  movie from start to finish, and has the sought after quality of having a little something for everyone. Visually entrancing and well acted, it's well worth a watch for audiences young and old though children under about 8 years old may find some scenes a little scary.

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