May 2, 2010

Alice in Wonderland

A few weeks ago Ariane and I went to see Tim Burtons Alice In Wonderland movie. I’ll admit I had really low expectations for this one. I think a lot of stuff that Tim directs ends up being weird for the sake of weird and a little too dark for my taste. I found myself pleasantly surprised with this flick. The story is already weird so I don’t know that there was much more that Tim could do to it to make it weirder. It wasn’t as dark as I thought it would be either. Johhny Depp makes a wonderfull Mad Hatter. I found it visually stunning with some great CG effects that don’t take away from the story. It’s not the traditional story of Alice; it takes place 10-15 years in the future and is really a coming of age and figuring out what you really want in life story. It does have some violence and scary parts in it so it’s probably not for little kids but it’s one you parents and your older kids could watch and enjoy.

Lucy got the Alice in Wonderland movie this last Easter and she likes it. It’s very whimsical and funny with lots of songs, just the thing for little kids. Alice bears a little resemblance to my Lucy, blonde hair and blue eyes I think we have a potential Halloween costume here. Maybe I could go as the Mad Hatter and Ariane could be the March Hair?

Several of Lucy’s favorite rides at Disneyland had Alice in Wonderland themes to them. There is of course the Alice in Wonderland ride that takes you through the movie. The Mad Tea Party or Tea Cups as they are more commonly known. The Small World ride also made some changes; several Disney characters have been added to the ride each in their respective countries including Alice and her friend the White Rabbit with the English group.

All this Alice stuff got me to wondering what the original book was like compared to the movies? So I went to my sister-in-law Liz to borrow the book, since I figured this type of book has got to be something she would own and any of you who know Liz know just what I am talking about.

The book is actually two books, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland was published in 1865 and Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There was published in 1871. Both were written by Charles Lutwidge Dodgson under the name Lewis Carroll who also did the artwork for his books. Originally a story he made up for some young girls he knew, one of which named was named Alice.

The books are about Alice’s trips to a new world which she gets to once by falling down a rabbit hole and another time by going through a mirror. Once there she basically wanders around meeting the strange inhabitants of this place. Each time she comes home by waking up and wondering if all just a dream was. The first book uses a deck of cards as a theme while the second is based on a game of chess. It’s about as weird as the movies are. So if you hated the movies you probably won’t find the books entertaining.

The movie is sort of combination of the two books, with several characters being included while others are left out probably due to time constraints. It was interesting to read about the characters that didn’t make it into the movies. I thought the books were fun and I enjoyed them and they aren’t very long. It’s something I think I could read to my daughter some day.


Sarah said...

You explored all the genres of Alice in Wonderland. I definitely think there is a potential Halloween costume.

Lindsay said...

If you need someone to make a costume...I can help.

Scarlet said...

I'm glad you enjoyed the book. Sorry my copy was so old (circa 1987 from my 2nd grade teacher) I hope you didn't lose any pages :)
I'm going to say that this is a book Lucy will probably love when she gets old enough for chapter books. I say take the example of Mrs. K... She thought the book was good/easy enough for a 2nd grader so Lucy should be ready for it in not to many years.