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Alice in Wonderland (2010)

Movie reviews by Kate

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Rating: PG for fantasy action/violence involving scary images and situations, and for a smoking caterpillar.

Genre: Children

Plot: From Walt Disney Pictures and visionary director Tim Burton comes an epic 3-D fantasy adventure ‘Alice in Wonderland’, a magical and imaginative twist on one of the most beloved stories of all time. Nineteen year old Alice returns to Wonderland.

Starring: Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham-Carter, Crispin Glover

Director: Tim Burton

Running time: 1:48

Kate says – 3 stars  “Ok folks, when you check out the reviews, you’ll likely find as many haters as there are lovers, for Burton’s adaptation of Alice in Wonderland. I am neither a lover, nor a hater, I’m a somewhere in betweener, with more tendencies to the lover side. Visually, wow! A treat for the eye and the imagination. This movie is whimsical, eccentric, and peculiar…all things we’ve come to love and expect from Burton (and Depp). If you go to it looking to have an absurd and bizarre ride, you won’t be disappointed. On the down side, there are moments when the pacing drags, I am not fond of the big climax battle scene, and I found that I really had no emotional connection to the movie or it’s characters. All in all though, an enjoyable adventure. Perhaps the Mad Hatter puts it best: ‘There is a place. Like no place on Earth. A land full of wonder, mystery, and danger! Some say to survive it: You need to be as mad as a hatter…Which luckily I am.‘ ”

Ebert says – 3 stars “Burton is above all a brilliant visual artist, and his film is a pleasure to regard…This has never been a children’s story. There’s even a little sadism embedded in Carroll’s fantasy. It reminds me of uncles who tickle their nieces until they scream. “Alice” plays better as an adult hallucination, which is how Burton rather brilliantly interprets it until a pointless third act flies off the rails.” (read full review)

Roger Moore (Orlando Sentinel) says – 3 stars “Burton has imagined what at times is a literally eye-popping world of beasties, Scots accents and gloom. “Logic and proportion” go out the window as Alice drinks this and shrinks, eats that and grows, and everyone and everything around her is stretched, bulbously blown up or otherwise deformed in endlessly inventive ways. Whatever the virtues of Avatar, this is the most fanciful use of 3D ever to hit the big screen.” (read full review) (Thomas Leupp) says – 2 stars (of 5) “Filled with moments of fleeting exhilaration and empty whimsy, Alice in Wonderland never really grabs the viewer in any meaningful way, its overall experience more akin to that of a theme park ride than a movie. Which I half suspect was Disney’s intention all along.” (read full review)

Michael Phillips (At the Movies) says –   See it! “Tim Burton’s most interesting film in a decade. Thoughtful, rather sinister, and often dazzling spectacle. “ (watch full review)

EW (Owen Gleiberman) says – C “The challenge of adapting Alice in Wonderland is this: How do you create relationships, a story, a purpose out of a tale whose prime purpose is not to have one?…a strange brew indeed: murky, diffuse, and meandering, set not in a Wonderland that pops with demented life but in a world called Underland that’s like a joyless, bombed-out version of Wonderland. It looks like a CGI head trip gone postapocalyptic. In the film’s rather humdrum 3-D, the place doesn’t dazzle — it droops.” (read full review)

Hollywood Reporter (Michael Rechtshaffen) says – “Even the filmmaker’s trademark winsomely outlandish style doesn’t prepare you for the thoroughly enjoyable spectacle that is his “Alice in Wonderland. A fantastical romp that proves every bit as transporting as that movie about the blue people of Pandora, his “Alice” is more than just a gorgeous 3D sight to behold.” (read full review)

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