Thursday, 23 May 2013

Alice in Wonderland (1951) - ★★★★

Director: Clyde Geronimi, Wilfred Jackson, Hamilton Luske
Writers: Lewis Carroll (Story and Adaptation), plus a whole bunch of other writers. 
Voice Actors: Kathryn Beaumont, Verna Felton, Sterling Holloway, Ed Wynn, Jerry Colonna, Richard Haydn, J. Pat O'Malley

Woah-ho-ho! This is one of the craziest, creepiest, cutest, scariest and loveliest movies Disney ever made. Alice in Wonderland is the third movie on my Disney Blogathon list, and so far I've found that all of these movies are exceptional. I really enjoyed Alice, with its zany wit, it's awesome life lessons and of course, the incredible story. This movie has arguably the greatest cast of memorable characters in the history of animated movies. For that, I think it's a solid film that deserves accolades as one of Disney's finest.

It's the story of Alice, a little girl who longs for a life that is opposite to what is normal. She chases a flustered rabbit that is "late for a very important date" down a hole, where she falls into a world where the opposites come true. Animals talk and wear clothes, inanimate objects come to life, a crazy queen rules the land... it's all so very awesome! At first she lets her curiosities get the better of her, but eventually she realizes that a normal life isn't so bad after all.

Alice 'The Free Spirit'
I feel I must tell you this... when I was a little boy, Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle-Dum scared the living hell out of me! Their voices, their cranky expressions, their bodies in general... I thought they were the spawn of the Devil! Watching it this time, I found them to be rather cute and interesting. I enjoyed their story about the "curious oysters," even though it used to make me sad when I was younger. Once again... this is a movie I enjoy more now than I ever did.

Let me tell you, I LOVE ALICE. Finally, a female lead with a real personality. No disrespect intended to Princess Aurora and Snow White, but they're just not very interesting. Now Alice! She is a free spirit, who is foolish but kind. She gets angry, she gets scared, she gets terribly sad, and she becomes as happy as a mad hatter! I really enjoyed following this girl's story, and it has a lot to do with the fact that I liked her very much.

A very happy un-birthday, to you!
Yes, this movie has some of the most epic and awesome characters ever imagined. My favorite is a mad rabbit named March Hare. He was responsible for about 90% of my laughter throughout the film. His antics with the Mad Hatter were absolutely hilarious, providing the best scenes in the movie. I also loved the villain in this film, The Queen of Hearts. Now she is one self-centered, pompous, rude, loud, nasty bitch. As terrible a person as she is, I can't help but like her. I think there's something wrong with me, because I'm naturally drawn to liking the evil characters the most.

We're all mad in Wonderland
The music was pretty awesome too. I particularly liked when the flowers sang to Alice, especially when that gorgeous white flower hit those high notes. Other than that, the music doesn't really live up to my high expectations of Disney. However, this film has a lovely score that compliments the story nicely. As for the animation, it looks really good considering it was made in 1951. There were no WOW moments for me in regards to the visuals, unlike most other Disney films.

Off with her head!

Hmm... I guess if I were to say one bad thing about this film, it would be that sometimes the story gets a little bit uninteresting. By the time we've seen talking rabbits, flowers, caterpillars, Cheshire cats and mad hatters, the film plateau's. I love the Queen of Hearts, but the movie had already peaked by the time we got around to her part. So even though I still enjoyed what came after, it just didn't hold my interest as much as it should have.

Nitpicking aside, this movie is so freaking amazing. Every single child in the world should know the story of Alice in Wonderland. The colorful characters and wonderful life lessons make this one of Disney's finest. I didn't 'love' this movie, but I really, really liked it.

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