Saturday, March 6, 2010

Movie Review: Alice in Wonderland B-

Who's In It: Johnny Depp, every British actor who's finished shooting principal for the next Harry Potter, some blonde girl

What It's About: Alice. She goes to Wonderland. Hilarity ensues.

What I Was Expecting: I'm not a huge Tim Burton fan. He seems to just make mediocre films that are visually stunning.

What I Got: A mediocre film that is visually stunning. In 3-D!!! I'm not entirely sure why it's in 3-D. Except for a few moments, it really serves no purpose. Much like the film itself. There are a few moments of classic Tim Burton whimsy. But just a few. A couple of moments where the story is interesting. But just a couple. From a visual standpoint, it's a wonder to behold. I've been making the argument since Avatar debuted that its revolutionary special effects will be passe in a few years and people will see it for what it is. Well, it's not even three months later and I thought this film surpassed Avatar in the special effects department. Scene after scene and I kept trying to figure out whether they were on a set or if it was green screened. You really can't tell. If you're impressed by astonishing filmmaking based on the visuals, by all means, go see this movie. Just ignore the disjointed scenes. I was expecting better from the screenwriter who gave us Beauty & the Beast and The Lion King.

Grade: B-

Oscar Potential: It's very early in the year, but it should still get consideration for the visual effects, art direction and costume design by 8 time nominee, 2 time winner Colleen Atwood.

Five Random Thoughts:

1. For a movie in 3-D, it takes a LONG time to use it to its advantage. In fact, the film takes a long time to do much of anything.

2. Well, "Off with their heads" will be a popular catch phrase for the next ten minutes or so.

3. Oh my God, is that...Crispin Glover?

4. Let's see, there's one Death Eater. Two Death Eaters....and three. Oh and Dolores Umbridge is in this too. It's almost easier to count which British actors HAVEN'T been in a Harry Potter movie. Even Stephen Fry, who is the voice of the Cheshire Cat, is the narrator on the Harry Potter video games.

5. Wait. That's not Crispin Glover. Is it? Has to be. (Yes, it is.)

Trailer Park:

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Very funny trailer of a movie about a kid going into junior high. Genius, at least in the sense that there's not an age where kids are more awkward and yet, Hollywood never touches on it.

Prince of Persia: Mike Newell used to make great movies with interesting characters. Four Weddings and a Funeral, Donnie Brasco. Well, I guess he needs to make up for Love in the Time of Cholera and do the paycheck movie.
Despicable Me: I would REALLY like to see a new trailer for this movie. I think this is the fourth time I've had to comment on it. The trailer they showed during the Super Bowl looks nothing like this.
Tron Legacy: Like the original Tron, with cooler graphics....I mean, visual effects.
Toy Story 3: I say this for just about every single trailer for Pixar movies. It looks okay, not great. Of course, I'm always wrong. This time, though, I think I may be right. The humor seems ripped right out of the Shrek movies.

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