Johnny Depp in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson) wrote Alice in Wonderland from stories he told a young friend named Alice Liddell while boating on the River Thames. The story follows the adventures of a young girl named Alice who falls down a rabbit hole and has strange adventures in a bizarre land populated with many quirky characters. Many film adaptations of the book have been made and most of us are familiar with the Disney animated version released in 1951.
In 2010, Tim Burton released his version of the Alice story in a 3-D version starring Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter. Johnny Depp is my favorite actor and I try to see all his movies. He likes to wear strange make-up and portray unpredictable and colorful characters. His Mad Hatter in the new Alice is no exception. His makeup and wardrobe are colorful and amazing. His dialog and actions jump all over the place but there is method to his madness. His part is much bigger in this Alice than in the original story.
In Burton’s Alice, Alice (well played by Mia Wasikowska) has grown up and is just about to be married. She runs away from the wedding celebration and falls down the rabbit hole. Helen Bonham Carter, Burton’s wife, plays the autocratic and capricious Queen of Hearts. She wears makeup that swells the top of her skull. The story includes rebellion in Wonderland against the Queen of Hearts with a final battle that includes the ferocious Jabberwocky.
The visual style of Burton’s Wonderland is great with surreal landscapes, grotesque creatures and amazing costumes. The 3-D effects don’t really add much to the visual impact of the film. If you are a fan of Alice in Wonderland, you will probably find some things that you don’t like in this movie but I am sure you will enjoy it overall. I know I sure did!