Saturday, March 6, 2010

So Where Were You Last Night?

I was in Wonderland, probably like most book geeks out there. I tried to go in expectationless. When I saw the preview a few months back, I was not trilled, but somehow over the intervening months I had forgotten my initial bad reaction and got excited. But I have to say it was not worth the whopping $15 price tag, especially if you then tack on the $2 service charge, and they didn't have Skittles! What movie theater doesn't have Skittles? Sometimes things don't work, the stars don't align, and the apparently perfect person isn't quite what was actually needed. Despite a star studded cast, it was lackluster, it was blah, it was boring. I will say, I didn't hate it, but it just wasn't all that. Tim Burton was hoping that by adding a definable plot that you'd have more of an emotional connection to the characters. Personally, I'm all good with my connection to the characters, it's his tinkering with creating an unsuccessful Red Queen overload with dissatisfied masses that rally around Alice that doesn't quite work. By having Alice escape her world and a looming arraigned marriage to come to Underland (yes, not a typo) and be forced to become a hero by killing the Jabberwocky seemed kind of dumb. Instead of a magical world of delightful nonsense, we have a world of oppression, death, war and post apocalyptic wastelands, that are never fully explained to my satisfaction. If they had fleshed out the resistance movement, if they had made the plot even more of a plot, then perhaps... but that's just a maybe. Having everything magically hing on Alice killing the Jabberwocky seemed dumb. Why would the Red Queen loose her power if the Jabberwock died? Really, if someone knows, please tell me. I personally found the real world far weirder and more interesting, peopled with some of my favorite British actors, many of which were in The Jewel in the Crown... but then again, yet another failed adaptation of Alice in Wonderland isn't that big a shock. There is no way this will please die hard fans and I don't see it bringing in any new ones... I think Public Enemies proved Johnny Depp does not always equal box office gold. Personally I think I'm going to go pick up the book and read what no one has ever successfully imitated, translated or adapted. There's only one Alice, and she'll always be there waiting for me in the pages of my favorite book. But just to entertain those who like to feast on the carcass, here's a few of my biggest concerns with the movie:

  • What's with all these new stupid made up words? Bizarre calenders and stupid times that are to come. Underland not Wonderland? And that's not explained till the end, and really, it's stupid?
  • The Red Queen and The Queen of Hearts are NOT the same person! Don't care if you're combining them, you're pissing me off.
  • Why is Helena Bonham Carter using her funny accent from the Merlin TV movie?
  • Aren't they trying to be a bit too like Return to Oz, and didn't Return to Oz do it better and darker, cause I thought Tim Burton liked dark? Let's add some true horrors... what was the Victorian equivalent of electro shock therapy? Anyone?
  • Trade routes to China were already established. Also, does this mean that Alice is going to be a drug czar?
  • The foot soldiers... too Steam Punk/Looking Glass Wars, didn't feel original. When did Burton become a hack?
  • Dan Scott (John Hopkins) from Midsomer Murders. Hate that prick. I know, offensive word, but it really fits his character in both appearances and totally covers my feelings for him.
  • Why is Crisin Glover stretched out? Why? There doesn't seem to be a purpose.
  • Guess who did the theme song? Avril Lavigne! Aren't I the happiest person in the world at this news? NOT! Apparently she's even going to do a line of clothes after Alice, oh joy unbounded!
  • Ok, I get funny accents, but WTF Johnny? The random Scottish brogue? You trying to outdo Brad Pitt in Snatch?
  • But, without parallel! The bizarre breakdancing interlude, oh, I mean fudderwhacking (see what I'm saying about made up words). It's not so much that it's a weird dance, it's that the music is early 90s electro pop randomly placed in a film firmly set in the 1800s!!! COuld you have tried insane bagpipes? Bagpipes are good, bagpipes are more... what's the word... not an anachronism!


Oh groan, now I don't know if I want to spend the time and money to see this. The special effects looked good. Did they work for you or were they over the top as well?
I was surprised to learn last week that Alice is older when she visits. Does this allow for her to fall for Depp?
Maybe I will skip it and stay home to read. We are supposed to get snow and there is always homework to do.

I went to see Shutter Island last night, but the lines for Alice were insane! I didn't know that many people live in our whole town! We were glad we decided to wait a while on that one.

I thought the special effects were pretty cool. Not over the top 3-D, but neat. Alice is older, and at the very end there was a slight hint, but nothing more. The lines were insane here too. I got there 1 1/2 hours early just to get good seats as it was completely sold out. I think I should have gone a seen Shutter Island as well...

i went to see it last night, and i thought it was pretty good. my favorite part was the outfits throughout the whole movie.

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