Lately I haven't been moved to enter a movie theater, save the hint of popcorn that seems to pull me in, even in the most despicable of locales.
But, Tim Burton moves me to do and see things I wouldn't normally, and his new children's prize, Alice in Wonderland was sold to me.
Long gone are NOT the days where I could watch Nightmare Before Christmas in any season and scoff at those who say that Beetle juice wasn't a masterpiece. So, I'm a Burton fan and I assumed I would love the new Wonderland.
What I found however, that despite the incredible precision to specific parts of Lewis Carrol's masterpiece I was left wanting more. The always animated Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp) was dressed to a 'T' looking as sharp as ever, with a quite a bit of Burton costumal flair to top him all off.
Deducing where the picture was taking me, I found the visual recreation of Carrol's novel and live-portrayal of the 1951 Disney version (the one I loved as a child), aesthetically pleasing but more or less flat on the didactical attempt at presenting a story I've loved for a long time.
I'm not sure if due to Burton's attempts to curb the excitement and 'scary' imagery - he's known for - was to grasp a 'wee' audience but it left me, a fan of Burton's unexpectedness and goth-esque imagery, wanting to see the parts and/or dialogue that seemed to be missing.
The 'curious' lack of animation and anger revealed by the queen of hearts (Helena Bonham Carter), did not reveal to me the character Carrol created all those years ago, while some characters were spot-on including Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle-Dum, the door mouse and the blue catepillar.
The story line lead with a short drama in Alice's life before Alice falls into the dreaded rabbit hole, following the white rabbit before a long fall and battle of transfiguration between large and small of herself.
She meets the astheically pleasing characters of Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle-Dum, Cheshire cat and others during her journey that also seemed accelerated compared to other versions of the story.
She meets the queen, flees from infantry-style playing cards and fights the Jabberwocky to end the journey, before climbing back up the rabbit hole and continuing the story; taking control of her life and following some semblance of her dreams and late-father's passion.
The movie was exciting in parts and clearly safe for children with a PG rating. I would tell anyone: "it is worth seeing," at least for the mind-blowing visuals (in parts) but, I am not ready to unseat Disney's masterpiece, as the better Wonderland; with or without a jabberwocky.