Alice Through the Looking Glass Now in Theatres!
While many were not a fan of Disney Pictures and Tim Burton’s 2010 adaptation of Alice in Wonderland, with several critics claiming that the film had no direction and lacked emotion, there definitely was no denying the visual imagery and classic Burton quirkness to the attempt.
Fast forward 6 years, and, Disney obviously was not phased by the lack of strong reviews on their first Alice effort. This past Friday, Alice Through the Looking Glass hit theatres and once again, has already dealt with mixed reception.
I got to see Alice Through the Looking Glass last week at The El Capitan in Hollywood. I admit, I was also a bit skeptical since I felt the first installment could have been MUCH more epic as far as story telling. While the cast was full of talent, much of it was wasted on a mediocre effort. Part 2 surprisingly has a tight bond among the cast and I felt the sense of a reunion as we were re-aquainted with such beloved characters like Hatter, Tweedledum and Tweedledee, and Absolem, our favorite caterpillar, voiced by the late, great Alan Rickman, in his final role.
Despite the stellar cast, Disney and Burton do still have a ways to go with conceiving a truly powerful adaptation with Alice in Wonderland.
Taking “loosely based” to new heights, Disney’s Through the Looking Glass finds Alice returning home to London after having spent three years at sea to China, in her Father’s foot steps. Miss Kingsleigh soon finds out that her ex-fiancé, Hamish Ascot, has taken over his father’s company and is plotting to have Alice sell him her father’s ship in exchange for her family home. In the midst of arguing with her Mother, Alice realizes that someone is watching her. It is no other than Absolem, who encourages the young lass to return down the looking-glass to Wonderland.
Taking one of her dramatic leaps down the spiral, Alice returns to Wonderland, just in time for tea. But, an old friend is missing. The White Queen and gang tell Alice that their beloved Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp) is not well. He is feeling extra, well, mad, as he is convinced his family is alive and searching for him and did NOT get killed by the infamous Jabberwocky.
(P!nk’s awesome rendition of White Rabbit.)
Being the only one not from Wonderland, Alice is Hatter’s only hope for finding out what truly happened that fateful day when it became known as “The Attack of the Jabberwocky” and Hatter’s parents were killed.
Along the way in the film, we’re introduced to new characters like Time (played by Sacha Baron Cohen) and get to travel back in time with Alice as she meets a young Hatter and gets to witness some very telling memories that lay between The Red and White Queen sisters.
Overall, the cast is, once again, quite stellar. While Mike enjoyed Cohen’s portrayal as Time, I could not stop quoting Borat in my mind. Perhaps since I finally saw the movie recently? I also found some of the side plots hard to swallow, and, well, corny. While we do learn of the spat that came between the sisters (The White Queen ate one of her Mother’s tarts after both girls were told not to and then says The Red Queen ate the treat and not her), much of the story, once again, falls a little flat.
Like in the 2010 film, the visuals are very strong and I also would recommend this movie to a wider audience than, say, The Jungle Book, which had many scary elements making it a film I wouldn’t recommend to those under the age of 10.
Have you seen Alice Through the Looking Glass? Are you planning to? I would love to hear your thoughts! xo
(Disclosure: I work often with Disney and saw this film on behalf of my blog. All opinions are my own.)