When Jacob discovers clues to a mystery that stretches across time, he finds Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. But the danger deepens after he gets to know the residents and learns about their special powers.
Samuel L. Jackson
Find out why the birds are so angry. When an island populated by happy, flightless birds is visited by mysterious green piggies, it's up to three unlikely outcasts - Red, Chuck and Bomb - to figure out what the pigs are up to.
A girl named Sophie encounters the Big Friendly Giant who, despite his intimidating appearance, turns out to be a kind-hearted soul who is considered an outcast by the other giants because, unlike them, he refuses to eat children.
Alice returns to the magical world of Underland, only to find the Hatter in a horrible state. With the help of her friends, Alice must travel through time to save the Mad Hatter and Underland's fate from the evil clutches of the Red Queen and a clock like creature, known as Time. Written by
Better than the first, but that's not saying much.
There is a common theory that Lewis Caroll was high on LSD when he made up the story of Alice in Wonderland. A concept that wouldn't be completely misplaced given its lunacy and a particular insinuation of certain consumables affecting Alice and her state of being. The truth of how it became is far more innocent but it doesn't stop people making their own assumptions, much like the reasoning as to why it attracted Tim Burton and Johnny Depp. The 2010 movie was a cocktail of over-cooked CGI and relied heavily on its main ingredient, another haughty creation from Depp who, thanks to his Jack Sparrow fame, wore the mantle of one of the most prominent character actors of our generation. At the time the visuals were considered a revelation, but where they succeeded the script severely lacked and a much loved story was exhaustively drawn out. Muppets Most Wanted director James Bobin takes the helm (or the blame - depending on how you want to look at it) with all of the original cast returning to their roles including; Helena Bonham Carter, Alan Rickman, Stephen Fry and Mia Wasikowska as Alice.
We find Alice at the beginning of the movie as the Captain of a ship which is threatened to be taken away from her unless she gives up her family home, a deal her Mother struck in a bid to avoid financial ruin. Feeling betrayed, Alice makes a run for it and finds a magic portal through a huge glass mirror. It doesn't take long before we're propelled back into Wonderland through a vortex of swirling colours and flashing images. An epileptic nightmare. Alice instantly finds familiarity in the form of Absolem et al before they inform her that the Mad Hatter is dying and the only thing that will save him is if Alice believes that his family are still alive. She then sets upon a mission to go back in time to warn them of the danger that may cause their death - This is the kind of story that seems to be clutching at the proverbial straw but at that definitive moment within the first 15 minutes of the movie, you know exactly what to expect.
What made Alice in Wonderland so appealing was the premise of such memorable characters. Wasikowska seems to slip back into her role with ease, however, she had some practice playing a similar role in Guillermo del Toro's Crimson Peak (2015). It's not to say that she is a one trick pony, but it is difficult to distinguish variety in her performances.
The introduction of (a very reserved) Sacha Baron Cohen as Time and a new antagonist has a promising start and receives the majority of the laughs. Unfortunately his character soon becomes second rate to Helena Bonham Carter's bellowing Red Queen and her painful over- acting begins to grate. Even Johnny Depp's Mad Hatter becomes a pathetic re-imagining as he limps through the movie offering very little performance. Namely, his forced lisp which makes his voice sounds like a creepy, old man that forgot to put his teeth in. The real shame is the misuse of the rest of the original cast who are forced to provide mere cameos in comparison to the lead actors. This is the final performance from Alan Rickman before his untimely death and the only regret is that he is barely given enough screen time to make an impact on the movie at all.
James Bobin does very well to mimic the style of the first movie. The audience are dazzled with so much visually, it appears like a desperate attempt to make up for the distinct lack of story. Alice Through the Looking Glass is a lot more structured (believe it or not) than the first instalment but, once again, it suffers from irritating pacing issues and poor performances from their key actors. On a positive note, thanks to the hypnotic special effects this is an entertaining children's movie and, regardless of the crude insinuations, that is most likely what Lewis Carroll intended it to be when he told it to 10 year old Alice Liddell as they rowed down the Thames. Whether that was the intention of Tim Burton is another thing altogether. But for the adults, this one will send you a little MAD.
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