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Reviews Comments: I don't get why everyone hates it. Alice In Wonderland 2010 film/book review by Kingcobrasaurus

I was quite surprised at the backlash that this film received. I quite liked it. I've noticed that most of the people complaining are traditional Alice fans, who don't approve of the changes that Burton made to the film. I, personally, found it to be an interesting spin on the series. The quirkiness and charm of the film is enough to redeem itself for the fairly cliche plot.

The main character, an older Alice, is a great role model. Not just for girls, but for everyone. When she rebels against social customs and expectations of her character, she is setting a great example for kids. It's a simple message: Just Be Yourself.

Okay, so the film had somewhat of an awkward pace. So Alice's dialogue was fairly contrived and emotionless. But these flaws are easily forgotten when you lose yourself in the film's enchantment.

Overall, 7.5/10. It isn't a perfect film, but it combines great ideas from the two quirky minds of Lewis Carroll and Tim Burton to create a film that is both uniquely enchanting and visually appealing.


  • CosmoMadness
  • 15th Jul 11
Yeah the plot was really cliche, I wish they could have come up with something a bit more different, and I think the whole 'stand up for what you believe in plot' wasn't done well. But nevertheless, I really did enjoy the film.
  • Terrie
  • 23rd Apr 13
Here's the thing. Why would you make an Alice in Wonderland film that is such a turn-off to fans of Alice in Wonderland? In one interview, Burton admitted that he didn't like the original stories, and, well, it shows.
  • Terrie
  • 23rd Apr 13

  • maninahat
  • 23rd Apr 13
I disliked it for its needless deviation away from the source material, whilst at the same time becoming the go to example for derivative fantasy movies. The latter issue is much more irritating. The "I hate corsets/arranged marriages/female oppression" thing has been done to death for the last two hundred years, and as Alice's primary characterisation, it immediately makes her less interesting.

Burton was apparently unable to come up with a compelling reason for Alice to be involved in Neverland's politics, so he went for a prophecy...the most contrived and arbitrary possible mechanics for driving a story. Telling Alice she has to fight the Jabberwock undermines the whole self-determination moral; wasn't her main characterisation supposed to be that she doesn't want people to decide her life for her? Tough shit Alice, whatever you do, you are still going to have to fight the Jabberwock, so you better start liking the idea.

Characters are badly realised and forced haphazardly into stock fantasy roles - The Hatter as a reluctant knight with a tragic past, the door mouse as a swashbuckling sidekick, etc. It's strange how Carroll's characters are designed to be crazy and inconsistent, yet that still fails to cover up the way they seem at odds with the internal logic of Burton's story. The White Queen, for instance, calls herself a pacifist, but still provides an army, pushes a young lady into a war, and harshly punishes her own sister with a fate worst than death. You could argue that this was a deliberate inconsistency written into the story, yet the dissonance goes totally unacknowledged by Alice, the one sensible person on the receiving end of all these contradicting elements. Perhaps cuckoo characters aren't good vehicles for telling a coherent fantasy plot.

All in all, it feels like a cynical, calculated, lazy attempt by Burton to capitalise on the Lord of the Rings and Narnia popularity, combining it with his own popular "Burtonesque" style. Burton's at his best when his stories focus on a single character's emotional turmoil (Edwood, Nightmare before Xmas etc.), and at its worst when the stories are plot driven. Dark Shadows is a further testament to that.
  • AnsemPaul
  • 28th May 13
Alice's entire characther in the original story is that shes told things and challenges them, hence the prophecy plot device and her blind acceptance of it is horribly jarring to people who like the original.
  • maninahat
  • 28th May 13
If anything it is the other way around: Alice (in the stories) is the one who tells the Neverlanders what is "proper" or "sensible", only to be poohpoohed aggressively by them. Essentially, she's a straight man to all these deranged, surreal characters.

The problem is more the movie's own internal inconsistency: Alice already starts out as a wayward, free-thinking, un-Victorian women, but ends up doing exactly what she is told (switching Netherland's abstract restrictions for Victorian England's). For some reason, this is set up to look like a positive transition, with the assumption that if you put Alice in a suit of armour and have her fighting people, she has "taken control", instead of her being used as a piece on a chessboard. It is all assbackwards.
  • maninahat
  • 28th May 13
It becomes all the more confusing when you read Alice Through the Looking Glass, in which there is already an actual plot line and sense of character progression: Alice sees herself as a pawn on a chessboard, and is trying to get to the end so as to "change into a Queen". It isn't very hard to make a parallel between that and self-determination, and had Burton's writers applied any skill whatsoever, they could easily have used that as a basic premise for the film, perhaps even fitting in the Victorian cultural observations, female empowerment, and even an epic battle finale.
  • someonecompletelyelse
  • 18th Jul 13
I am mad at the "be yourself" plot. It basically makes all other women appear as shallow idiots, when, first, acting like Alice would make you go to asylum. Frankly, I guess even a modern woman who'd go back in time would be a lot more... thoughtful? Second, it was unbelievably cheap. Even big thinkers and humanists were bigoted for today standards. And her adventures haven't even had woman liberation theme. A lot of women were heroes but it haven't magically give them XXI century mindsets. I am mad, because I felt the women ho had to play by that time's rules being ridiculed, shown as guilty of their own state. They could've just rebel like Alice! And nothing bad would happen to them! No asylums, no hate from society, they'd all use their "standard future good wife" education to get to work in science, business, technology! And then, no one would jokingly tell them to go make sandwiches, because it never happens! Oh, Tim Burton, you're so funny.
  • TheRealYuma
  • 4th Feb 17
In short, it\'s one time where Tim Burton\'s being an auteur did not work for the better of the film.

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