I went along to see Alice in Wonderland last weekend after seeing the trailer and I found myself thinking that I didn't quite know what to make of it. Although I did enjoy the film I felt slightly disappointed that Tim Burton took deviation from the original Lewis Caroll books to the extreme.
The story starts with Alice almost being trapped into a awful marriage, leading her to follow to the White Rabbit and subsequently, take a tumble down the rabbit hole. There she finds the "drink me" potion and cake that allow to her shrink or grow, so into Wonderland she goes. She soon discovers it's not all fun and games and under Burton's style of directing the landscapes are decidedly creepy! As Alice progresses through Wonderland she learns that the White Queen (Anne Hathaway) is no longer in power and the Red Queen (Helena Bonham Carter) holds the crown, albeit on top of her rather enormous head.
Although I was disappointed with the plot I thought lots of the characters and voices were amazing. I also think the critics may have actually got the reviews right this time, I've read a lot that have said the character development is great but the script really lets them down. I particularly loved the Cheshire Cat, which was brilliantly voiced by Stephen Fry. Last week a friend of mine told me that the Cheshire Cat was originally modelled on a British Shorthair cat, of which I'm the proud owner of two. I can see why Lewis Caroll chose the breed for inspiration with their round faces, thick fur and rather chubby appearance!
Getting back to the story, Alice learns that she must slay the fearsome Jabberwocky in order to overthrow the Red Queen, who has a liking for chopping people's heads off. Part of the entertaining aspect of the film was recognising the various famous voices dotted here and there; Alan Rickman, Barbara Windsor and Matt Lucas to name but a few. With the help of the captured Mad Hatter (played by Johnny Depp - I found myself being forcibly reminded of Willy Wonka) plus the suddenly cute and rather cuddly Bandersnatch, Alice escapes the Red Queen's castle with the vorpal sword.
Australian actress Mia Wasikowska gives a great performance as red and white soldiers battle it out over the crown; she slays the Jabberwocky and the Red Queen is banished. All in all, I found Alice in Wonderland to be an entertaining and enjoyable film, setting aside my reservations about not being true to the books.