The most awaited movie after Avatar (2009) opened to a tremendous response. Director Tim Burton has made an extension to Lewis Carroll’s (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson) novels Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland (1865) and Through The Looking-Glass (1871). It combines live action with animation and was released in 3D, IMAX 3D and regular theatres. Most of you have read the novels so the story is already familiar to you except Burton has taken literary liberty that lends the movie a charm of its own. It presents the 21st Century Alice.
Alice Kingsley (19, Mia Wasikowska) attends a Victorian party after her father Charles’s (Marton Csokas) death. Alice’s mother is Helen (Lindsay Duncan), Imogene (Frances de la Tour) is her delusional aunt and Margaret (Jemma Powell) her sister.
Faith and Fiona (Eleanor Gecks and Eleanor Tomlinson) twins, reveal to Alice that Hamish will propose to her. It turns out to be her engagement party to wed her into (Hamish) Ascot family, who now own her father’s business. She flees and follows White Rabbit, Nivens McTwisp (Michael Sheen). Falling into a rabbit hole she reaches the Underworld.
Iracebeth of Crims, the Red Queen (Helena Bonham Carter) has captured Underworld from her sister Mirana of Marmoreal, the White Queen (Anne Hathaway). It is Alice’s job to kill Red Queen’s guardian Jabberwocky (Christopher Lee) the dragon. But Alice is portrayed in wrong light by Absolem the caterpillar’s (Alan Rickman) words. Red Queen’s army captures McTwisp, Uilleam the dodo (Michael Gough), and Tweedledum and Tweedledee (Matt Lucas) but Alice escapes. The Knave of Hearts, Ilosovic Stayne (Crispin Glover) informs Red Queen about it and she wants Alice captured.
Chessur, the Cheshire cat (Stephen Fry) finds Alice and takes her to The Mad Hatter Tarrant Hightopp (Johnny Depp), Thackery Earwicket the march hare (Paul Whitehouse) and Mallymkun the dormouse (Barbara Windsor). Stayne captures Hatter, who is taking a shrunken Alice to the White Queen. His hat and Alice are left behind. Bayard Hamar the bloodhound (Timothy Spall) helps Alice get into the Red Queen’s palace to rescue the Hatter. McTwisp offers her food that makes Alice large sized. She introduces herself as Um from Umbridge to the Red Queen. Hatter has now become the queen’s hat maker. There is also Tall Flowers (Imelda Staunton).
Alice learns the Vorpal sword to kill the dragon is hidden in Bandersnatch’s den. Mallymkun has already removed his eye but Alice restores it so he favors her. He flees with her and Bayard. Chessur saves Mallymkun and Tarrant from execution and they too flee. Alice hands over the sword to the White Queen and regains her normal size.
Absolem reminds Alice of her earlier Underworld visit and encourages her to fight the dragon. On Frabjous Day, armies of White Queen and Red Queen face each other. Alice fights the dragon and kills him. The While Queen defeats Red Queen and regains her crown and banishes Red Queen and Ilosovic to the outlands.
Alice returns home after drinking the dragon’s blood. She refuses Hamish’s (Leo Bill) proposal and gains employment with his father Lord Ascot (Tim Pigott-Smith). His wife is Lady Ascot (Geraldine James). Alice then sails away on a ship with a fluttering Absolem (now a butterfly) over her shoulder.
Mia as Alice will scale new heights in Hollywood. She has arrived. Johnny Depp never fails to surprise us in new get ups. He lights up the screen as Mad Hatter. Red Queen and White Queen are charming in their roles.
-Avril Lavigne has sung the lead single “Alice”. The soundtrack album has 24 tracks. You will end up humming the lead. It is sheer magic to watch this fairytale in 3D. It has been critically appreciated and is minting mega bucks the world over. It has broken the records of Spider-Man (2002) and Avatar (2009). Disney has also released a video game based on the movie for Wii, Nintendo DS and Windows PC. –
This summer is not hot considering the hot AIW is melting us like ice. It may be an adventure in wonderland but what it does to our imagination leaves us stunned. Words fail me to describe the awesome scenery and animals. It is a combination of technology and creativity. If you can’t go to the theatre, no worries. 3D TVs will soon flood the markets (except watch out for your inflated electricity bill). You don’t want to miss out on the fun? Right! So head where the action is. Enjoy!