Jan-11-2017

Reel Snippet – Alice Through the Looking Glass

Summary: Alice (Mia Wasikowska) has grown up to be an adventurous ship captain when she finds her way back to Wonderland… sorry, Underland again. Her old friends the White Queen (Anne Hathaway), the Cheshire Cat (Stephen Fry), and all the rest are worried about the Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp), who is going out of sorts convinced that his family is still alive. In desperation, she seeks out Time himself (Sasha Baron Cohen), who turns out to be working with Alice’s old nemesis, the Red Queen (Helena Bonham Carter). As a final ploy, she steals a clockwork device called the chronosphere and uses it as a time machine to…

…excuse me a moment…

…that’s better. She goes back in time to when the Red and White Queen were kids…

…you know what? I’m skipping this part before my brain hemorrhages.

Review: Alice Through The Looking Glass is… dumb. There’s no way around it – this is a mindmashingly stupid movie. I was no fan of the first movie, but even by the abysmally low standards it set, this fell extremely short. Do I even need to write this review? You can probably tell from the synopsis why this movie fails. I mean… time travel… doesn’t that just scream Alice in Wonderland to you? How about clockwork robots that can combine together to form larger ones? Grudges, doomsdays, and backstories to characters that were meant to embody madness? For crying out loud, can we please stop trying to turn a whimsical story of a drug-induced roadtrip into the lamest young adult novel ever.

But here’s what really adds salt into the wound: the backstories and motivations are absolute garbage. I won’t give them away, but they’re beyond inane. The child actresses of the Red and White Queen (Leilah de Meza and Amelia Crouch respectively) do fine enough, but they’re given absolutely no good material to work with. I hate to keep beating this drum, but this is not Alice in Wonderland. Nothing about this comes even close to Alice in Wonderland – not Sasha Baron Cohen’s time puns or antics, not the girl power message that’s so flat it’s practically a crepe (and not even a fancy one, a sad one that nobody wants to eat, like the McDonald’s of crepes), and not the insipid dialogue and plot that wants to be so epic, yet is instantly forgettable. For crying out loud, the woman who wrote the script for this, Linda Woolverton, also wrote The Lion King and Beauty and the Beast. What on Earth happened?!

I know there were people defending the previous movie by saying it was faithful to the original books (uh-huh, sure), but there’s zero grounds for that same defense here. This is as far from Lewis Carroll’s vision as my bum is from the far side of Pluto. Wonderland… sorry, Underland is a CGI eyesore that looks more like it’s promoting some future ride at Disneyland than trying to create an immersive world. Kids will be bored by the nonsense plot, fans of the books will be offended by the changes, and critics like me will block it out as soon as it’s over so as to save our precious brains from further damage.

Fun Tidbit: This is Alan Rickman’s last movie, may he rest in piece. It’s also a bit baffling because he has the least screen time out of any of the characters.


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