So it turns out we were lucky enough to go and see ‘Alice Through the Looking Glass‘ yesterday, the follow-up to Tim Burton’s ‘Alice in Wonderland’ which came out in 2010. And, guess what? It was really, really good. Like, really good and we weren’t altogether expecting it. We might even go so far as to say, it was impossibly good.
Don’t know what we’re banging on about with all this talk of ‘impossible’? Well, if you’ve seen the first ‘Alice in Wonderland‘ film, you’ll know that she likes to believe in at least six impossible things before breakfast. However, the next ‘Alice’ instalment sees her a little more grown up and jaded by adulthood, dealing with the hardships of trying to be taken seriously as a woman and losing faith in life’s impossibilities.
It was actually seriously touching — we’re getting choked up all over again now just thinking about it. So much so that we just need to tell you all our thoughts and feelings on Alice, the Mad Hatter, Time and the rest of the absolutely bonkers characters.
1. Mia Wasikowska slayed as the female lead
One component which is pretty important to us — and Disney it would now appear — is to have strong, kickass female characters who defy those expectations given to their gender and, tbh, do whatever the hell they want. With Disney bringing out other films like ‘Brave‘ and ‘Frozen‘ in the past, which both advocate female empowerment FYI, it would be wrong for them to go back on that with Alice’s characterisation. However, ‘Alice Through the Looking Glass’ opens with our main lady as the captain of a merchant ship, and the story only goes onwards and upwards with Alice’s continuous battle not to be undermined by men. And trust us when we say Mia Wasikowska absolutely slays.
2. Hatter’s cripplingly good backstory
The character development within this second Alice instalment was, for sure, one of the biggest successes within the film. Although Tim Burton brought some interesting twists to ‘Alice in Wonderland’, namely that it was actually called Underland and Alice had been there before, ‘Alice Through the Looking Glass’ offered some seriously heart-wrenching backstories to its characters and made us fall even more in love with them and their complexity. Johnny Depp actually managed to make the Mad Hatter even more adorable than we thought possible. We’re not sure why we’re surprised tho — he is always incredible. Obvs!
3. The concept of Time
Time is not so much a thing as it is a person. Confused? Tbh, same. But Sacha Baron Cohen as Time, and his precious Chronosphere, function as the butt of a lot of tea party-goers jokes. The puns are limitless and although, for the most part, they had us rolling our eyes, they also had us in complete stitches. The entire concept added an exciting dimension to the film and, ultimately, had us holding our breaths until the very last second.
4. The tale of two sisters
Just like with the Mad Hatter, we got some serious dirt on just what made the Red Queen so bitter and her head so big. We don’t wanna spoil it for you, but it definitely goes to show things aren’t always so black and white, or, in this instance, white and red.
5. An enchanting ensemble cast
There wasn’t one individual that stood out like a sore thumb in ‘Alice Through the Looking Glass’. The smaller principal roles only added to the overall humour and madness of the film and we kinda just want to join in on all the crazy happenings in Underland and never leave. Honestly, we don’t know how Alice hacks the normal world after being there. It must be so dull.
6. And, finally, witty, whimsical dialogue
Linda Woolverton, who wrote the screenplay, absolutely smashed it, in our opinion. As well as the ingenious puns and endless yolks (soz) about Humpty Dumpty, there were also some pretty terrific themes and messages interwoven throughout the film. The one that of course stands out most is that you can’t change the past, but you can learn from it. And learn they did, because Alice’s adventure was quite literally out of this world and we enjoyed every single second of it. Roll on DVD release!
Will you be going to see ‘Alice Through the Looking Glass’ when it’s released on 27th May? We’d love to hear your thoughts @maximumpop. Tim Burton adds some serious Disney magic to Lewis Carroll’s story that’s unlike any of the other adaptations that have come before and we seriously loved it.