I love Tim Burton and Johnny Depp, especially when they team up to created something incredible. However, it seems to me this film shows the dynamic duo's relationship has reached its end.
The film became a huge hit, but lacks in just about everything. To me, it felt like Tim Burton sat down one lonely night and said:
"You know what? It's been two years since I made a film with Johnny Depp. I also haven't made a sequel in about 15 years. Maybe I should adapted a bizarre fairy tale and half-way make a sequel to it when Alice is older and the whole world is crashing on her until she falls down the hole again! AND WAIT! Avatar will probably be an incredible hit so why don't we steal some of their graphics and make a film too!"
Yeah, I was not impressed. I've never been a big fan of the Alice series to begin with and this film took it down another level.
Through the first bit of the film, we see just how bad Alice has it off. She has horrible future in-laws, a rather awkward soon to be fiance, and her mother is determined to run her life. The audience goes back and forth between the multiple characters trying to decide if she is the "real Alice". We keep hearing "But this is my dream" as Alice's reasoning behind the whole event. The graphics were lame and just screamed Avatar. Plants, characters and even dialogue seemed animated and lacked something.
The Mad Hatter role in both person and storyline was written just for Johnny Depp. It would've worked better if he'd been left in the background just as expected and given Depp a role with more substance rather than just to have his name on the poster. What's so wrong with just having him in a movie and not making the whole story revolve around him.
As the movie drags on, you get tired of hearing Helena Bonham Carter yelling some variation of "Off with her head". You have the characters from the books portrayed in unusual ways, such as the Cheshier Cat being more mad than the Mad Hatter himself, and the Caterpiller obviously enjoying his reefer.
At the end, it seems like it's trying to redeem itself by showing a large scale battle between the good guys and the bad guys. Alice fulfills her "destiny" and all is good. She returns to reality and dumps the man who proposes to her, tells off half the cast, and does a bizarre dance for whatever reason she has.
This movie was a turn off and I'm ashamed to say I took a girl to see this for a date. Talk about a major embarrassment. As stated before, the film is already a big hit and that's probably because Johnny Depp is in it because everything else rather sucks. Depp did a good job, or as good a job as someone playing a mad hatter can do.
Burton should've just done either a remake or a new film adaptation of the books. After watching this, I smell a Razzie Award and think it's definitely eligible. My advice: Don't see it. Percy Jackson is still out if you have kids and Shutter Island is out if you're an adult.