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Thursday, July 29, 2010

Alice in Wonderland

This week we watched 2 movies retelling this story.

Time Burton's Alice in Wonderland was a lively, imaginative movie, recasting Alice as a savior of Underland, a la the children in the Narnia series. It incorporates many aspects of the original story, but adds some weight and substance, and a surprising amount of humor. It was better than I expected, not least of all because Mia Wasikowska, who plays Alice, is quite, well, wonderful.

Alice, the TV mini series that first appeared on the SyFy channel last year, was also clever and intriguing. It's a complete reimagining of the story, with a somewhat darker tone. In this version, Alice as a grown woman, pulled into a mysterious parallel universe that routinely kidnaps humans and drains them of their emotions. I liked it, but it was overly violent and it felt a little padded, especially toward the end (though I might not have thought that if I watched in 3 parts on TV, rather than all in one sitting). I enjoyed that the "Hatter" was recast as a love interest for the mature Alice, and the search for the absent father was a interesting addition (though I didn't like the resolution of the former subplot much more than the latter).

Both are worthwhile adaptations and show how much this complex story resonates, even many years after its debut.



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