Grinning like…well, you know: Some quick “Alice” thoughts

I’ve never played Dungeons & Dragons, though in my head I’ve always imagined the game’s campaigns playing out something like Tim Burton’s stunning take on “Alice in Wonderland.” 

The film is visually fantastic (I’ll take Wonderland over Pandora, thanks) and enjoyably dark. Mia Wasikowska was a delight in the titular role, and Helena Bonham Carter and her ginormous, bulbous head steal every scene.

As for Johnny Depp, his Mad Hatter was outfitted like a more demented version of Heath Ledger’s Joker.  Character-wise, he was equal parts Jack Sparrow and…Shrek.  Hated the accent.

There’s legitmate artistry to what Tim Burton threw onto the screen. Beauty in the chaos. Darkness tainting the vivid colors.  Of all the swirling visuals, two scenes especially stood out.  The first saw Alice crossing a moat lined with the stone faces of victims (presumably) beheaded by the Red Queen.  The second was the warped and epic final conflict, which found Alice swordfighting the dragon-like Jabberwock as the armies of the two queens loyally marched into battle.

If you’re looking to be convinced or swayed to see it, I should mention that Alan Rickman voices the part of the blue, hookah-puffing, caterpillar.  Hans freaking Gruber. 

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