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Alice Through the Looking Glass (1998).

April 10, 2007

The Scoop:
The makers of this British television production aimed for an adult version of the classic children’s tale — mostly, they seemed to have accomplished this by removing the charm and adding tedium. The childlike dreaminess of the original has been replaced with the quality of a feverish hallucination, which is intriguing, if not entirely successful.

A young Kate Beckinsale is the grown-up Alice, who takes a trip through the mirror while reading the bedtime story to her daughter. There are some wonderful visuals and effects on display, but the overall experiment falls flat. Furthermore, as the title suggests, the film focuses on the second of Lewis Carroll’s “Alice” novels, so such familiar crowd-pleasers as the White Rabbit, the Queen of Hearts and the Mad Hatter are missing.

The end result is an interesting “serious” literary adaptation, but you’d probably still be better off just sticking with something definitive, like the Disney animated version.

Best Bit:
The stylish, music video quality of the “Walrus and the Carpenter” sequence.

Side Note:
Director John Henderson is a veteran of the British “Spitting Image” television series.

Companion Viewing:
“Alice in Wonderland” (1951).


Take a Look:
Two trailers are available over at IMDb.

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