Darkly humorous. Watch it.
The music, photography and art are great, but I think the greatest achievement is acting and direction. To tell such delicate text without sounding forced requires very good direction from the film maker (Daniel Rosenfeld) and very good acting (all of them), of course. The film reaches intense moments without being over the top Romantic. It also has very interesting montage scenes; specially one with old photos, Cornelia's voice over and The Swan (Saint Saens).
There's no need to say much more. It's a film to experience.
EDIT: I just want to add that's been 2 years since I did this review. I watch now the show every day on my Ipod, while doing a 1 hour bus ride to work... And I get there smiling. Thanks again Conan!
Now, if you are looking for the real deal: Lewis Carrol nonsense magic. Forget it. This is too 'hollywoodesque' for you. I really hated how they disfigured the Mad Hatter. And it's not Johnny Depp (he actually makes it entertaining) it's the screenplay. This movie (this sequel) has very little to do with the books, and even with Disney's cartoon adaptation. Yes, it has all the original characters and situations, but the characters appear almost all together, with no sense of pace, and some of them are completely wrong (Mad Hatter, oh my god what was that!, the Dormouse...). And the situations were changed to get some nice screenplay to make a movie for people just wanting to hang there, eat pop corn and have some fun. I did like the vibe of the Cheshire Cat, the Red Queen, and, at the beginning, the Blue Caterpillar.
So... I didn't like the movie. It's not bad at all, it's entertaining but... you know. It's just another movie. I think Burton made a big mistake here. It could've been magical if he just used the original book. It could have been something to remember; but we will all just forget. Carroll's writing was excellent and there was no need to try to beat him or disfigure his work. Disfigure sounds about right.
7.5 out of 10
* So, is this a breakthrough movie of revolutionary film making? YES * A must watch? YES! No doubt * A movie that will make me think? NOT THAT MUCH * A great film like The Godfather or even Terminator? Mhmmm... NO
It's a mixed bag of bitter sweetness but very enjoyable and, for many moments, just magical.
8.5 out of 10
Just go see it and enjoy what cinema should always be. It's a 10 out of 10.