Alice returns to the whimsical world of Wonderland and travels back in time to help the Mad Hatter.Alice returns to the whimsical world of Wonderland and travels back in time to help the Mad Hatter.Alice returns to the whimsical world of Wonderland and travels back in time to help the Mad Hatter.
Johnny Depp Through the Years
A minor quirk in this film was that I had to turn on the subtitles to understand some of the characters. The Mad Hatter and King of Time, for example, had really thick accents that made their spoken language hard to comprehend.
But the major drawback to this movie was its naive portrayal of human nature that borders on the offensive.
While it is certainly true that "you can't change the past but can learn from it," which is demonstrated vividly throughout the film, the movie unfortunately propagates the misguided notion that you can somehow ***change other people.*** If one tries to do that in the real world, they almost always will be sorely disappointed.
Unrealistic *physics* in movies (and stories) can be thrilling, and a lot of fun. But unrealistic *human nature* in stories, on the other hand, can give people false impressions about life and relationships -- not to mention that it makes it extremely difficult to relate to the characters in the story. Those characters might as well be robots or space aliens.
In this film, the Red Queen is an abusive jerk -- supposedly all because her sister told a small lie to her when they were kids. The movie then tries to show the viewer that if it weren't for this one single childhood incident, then the Red Queen supposedly would've turned out fine. However, it is clear that she *already was* a jerk prior to that incident. And if it hadn't happened, then obviously, *something else* during her childhood would've "set her off" sooner or later, instead.
So, as an adult, the White Queen thinks she can simply *apologize* to her abusive sister for that one incident, and then, the White Queen can finally *trust* her sister again?
That is pure, wishful thinking that has absolutely no basis in reality. With those kinds of people, it's best to *keep one's distance* -- not to suck up to them like a masochistic doormat.
Anyway, the next interesting relationship in this film is the one between Alice and her mom. Her mom isn't abusive like the Red Queen, but simply has a different outlook on life than Alice's. Instead of hoping that her mom would "change," Alice instead could choose to just share in the things they both have in common, and leave the other matters alone. In other words, Alice could still have a good relationship with her mom, but a ***less close one*** than they might have wished for. Alice could still pursue her dreams while paying an occasional visit to her mom.
Lastly, I'd like to examine the Mad Hatter's comment that "you only get one" family in life.
This is just plain false.
What about all the people who grew up in an abusive family -- who fled when they were teenagers, and later developed a close family relationship with a close friend's family, or with that of a future spouse? One of the main reasons I loved Avatar, and Tim Burton's 2010 version of Alice in Wonderland, is because of the inspirational theme of "flying away and finding one's place" in the world where you can be happy.
This theme was sorely missing from the 2016 version of Alice Through the Looking Glass.
All in all, this was a fun movie, but with a confusing and lackluster message.
- Nov 19, 2016