Review: Alice Through The Looking Glass Is Overly Long And Dull
Title: Alice Through The Looking Glass
Director: James Bobin
Screenplay: Luna Woolverton (screenplay) and Lewis Carroll (books)
Principal Cast: Mia Wasikowska, Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Anne Hathaway, and Sacha Baron Cohen
Summary: Alice returns to the whimsical world of Wonderland and travels back in time to save the Mad Hatter.
I do not like Tim Burton’s Alice In Wonderland. I think, at the time, I just forgot it happened, but the longer I thought about it the more I got annoyed. It was impossible to miss all of the merchandise for this movie and as a recovering goth and someone who has a fondness for Tim Burton movies I got a lot of hate for disliking this one. It seemed like a lot of people forgot about this movie after a while, and most of the cast seemed to have moved on, so I was a little surprised when a sequel was announced. I wasn’t exactly looking forward to seeing this since it looked like more of the same but I figured maybe the director of The Muppets has another good movie in him.
Alice Through The Looking Glass is overly long, boring and seems to forget who the main character is.
When I said that the cast seems to have moved on I was being entirely serious. When this movie came out Mia Wasikowska was dipping her toes into the mainstream movie scene but seems much more keen to stay in the independent circuit now. Anne Hathaway was better known for romantic comedies but has now won an academy award. Johnny Depp was already one of the biggest stars on the planet but thanks to a line of duds isn’t the box office draw he used to be. Perhaps this explains why everyone in this movie looked so bored. Alice (Mia Wasikowska) is our main character and somehow manages to be insufferable. The script doesn’t help her out much, but there was a moment I contemplated making a drinking game with the words “curious, possible, and impossible” as the words. She also seems to lack anything resembling motivation on her own, aside from “make a bad decision to save a guy she’s met twice”.
That guy is, of course, the Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp) who somehow manages to get first credit despite the movie being named Alice Through The Looking Glass not Let’s Learn About The Mad Hatter’s Daddy Issues. The movie is all about saving him so Alice never really gets a chance to grow that much except learning the value of family, I think. Depp is playing this role the same way he’s played all of his roles since Pirate Jack earned Disney a billion dollars so there isn’t anything interesting going on. Time (Sacha Baron Cohen) might be the most interesting new character but he’s being played as a villain when he really isn’t. You could say the villain is Alice herself. She’s not so much a hero by the end as she fixes the problems she caused.
It seems incongruous to bring this up, but I’ve seen plenty of people talking about it so I’m going to address it; this movie is not going to be fun to watch while high. Marijuana is legal in several states, and popular to the demographic that this movie is shooting for, but this isn’t something to watch while stoned. The 3D is probably going to give you a headache, it gave me one stone cold sober and there isn’t anything trippy to make this fun to watch. If anything this movie isn’t visually interesting enough to recommend. There is an aesthetic here but it’s not one that I particularly liked, and a lot of decisions seemed to have been made with the idea of merchandise in mind. I say that as someone who loves superhero movies and if this annoyed me (as someone who wore a shirt that had a dancing baby Groot on it) I think that says something.
Alice Through The Looking Glass wasn’t bad enough to make me legitimately angry, but I also know that it’s going to make a ton of money so I’m probably going to have to sit through another one in several years. I’m mostly hoping the cast didn’t sign three movie contracts since contracts seem to be the only reason half of them are here.