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Tim Burton & Johnny Depp Give Us 3D Alice in Wonderland

Tim Burton  & Johnny Depp Give Us 3D Alice in Wonderland Tim Burton & Johnny Depp Give Us 3D Alice in Wonderland

Combine the hallucinatory 1800’s-era writings of Lewis Carroll with Johnny Depp, Tim Burton, 3D and Disney, and what do you get? Alice in Wonderland, that’s what, a sure to be blockbuster 3D movie that sees Depp and Helena Bonham Carter giving wild performances amidst a virtual reality, live action backdrop.

Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass were published in the mid-19th century, and were instantly recognized as a new genre of writing that combines fantasy, surrealism, social commentary, and imagination.

And although some have viewed the books as “children’s stories,” adults have long enjoyed Alice’s adventures too.

That’s why Tim Burton, master of movie fantasy and mayhem, worked with Johnny Depp to bring Alice in Wonderland alive as no other director can. Depp plays the Mad Hatter, one of the many totally bizarre characters Carroll created in his books.

According to insiders who’ve seen pre-release versions of the 3d film, the Mad Hatter is one of Depp’s best roles. Which is saying something, considering the fact that Burton and Depp have worked together so often before (Edward Scissorhands,  Ed Wood, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, to name a few).

Alice in Wonderland influenced later works of fantasy, such as Lord of the Rings, Naked Lunch and The Narnia Chronicles, but Burton’s movie doesn’t follow the exact plotlines of Carroll’s  books.

Yes, the familiar characters from the books are all there. The Cheshire Cat. The White Queen and the Red Queen. The White Rabbit. And the crazy nature of the books, replete with word games, hallucinogenic drug references and bizarre plot twists, is certainly ripe for the wonders of 3D modern moviemaking.

But Burton says his movie is more an interpretation of what would happen if the little girl Alice from the books had grown up to be a teenage girl who found herself in the world of strange wonders that young Alice experienced in the Carroll classics.

Perhaps Burton and Depp could have taken Alice in Wonderland to a totally different level by including some biopic material on the book’s author, whose real name is Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (Lewis Carroll is a pseudonym).

Dodgson/Carroll was more than just an author- he was also a math wizard, a religious official, and a photographer.

Beyond that, and quite a controversial movie Burton and Depp could have made out of an Alice in Wonderland that included Dodgson/Carroll, there are allegations that Dodgson was a pedophile.

This is based on his obvious knowledge of and devotion to little girls, of which his Alice heroine is a prime example.

Indeed, legend has it that Dodgson first created his Alice in Wonderland stories while sailing down a river with three little girls who were daughters of a family friend. Among the pre-pubescent girls- Lorina, Edith and Alice Liddell- was Carroll’s favorite, Alice Liddell.

According to some accounts, Dodgson regaled Alice with his fantastical stories while on the river. She begged him to make them into books. And so he did, apparently leaving many clues in his text linking Alice in Wonderland to Alice Liddell.

As an accomplished studio and portrait photographer working at a time when photography was a new art and technology, Dodgson’s portraits of Alice Liddell certainly have an air of unsettling sensuality about them. Not only that, but Dodgson was widely known to have drawn and photographed nude or semi-nude pre-pubescent girls.

Indeed, if Dodgson was alive today doing the same kind of photography and art involving young girls that he did before he died in 1898, he would certainly be in prison the rest of his life for child pornography!

Perhaps it’s obvious why Burton and Depp didn’t take this on when they did their movie based on Carroll’s books.

What is known about Alice in Wonderland 3D is that it promises to bring Avatar-quality live action virtual reality and 3D to classic literature that’s long been enjoyed by children and adults. Tim Burton and Johnny Depp have worked together to make quirky, memorable cult movies before. Perhaps Disney Studios has a box office winner with Alice in Wonderland.

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Last modified on Wednesday, 01 June 2011 19:09

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