Alice in Wonderland is a 2010 fantasy adventure film directed by Tim Burton, written by Linda Woolverton, and stars Mia Wasikowska, Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Anne Hathaway, Crispin Glover, Alan Rickman, Matt Lucas, Michael Sheen, and Stephen Fry. It is a live-action extension to the Lewis Carroll novels Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass. The film uses a technique of combining live-action and CGI animation.
In the film, Alice is now 19 years old and goes back to Underland, a place she previously visited 13 years ago. She is told that she is the only one that can slay the Jabberwocky, a dragon controlled by the Red Queen. Burton said the original Wonderland story was always about a girl wandering around from one character to another and she never felt a connection emotionally, so he wanted to make it feel more like a story than a series of events. He doesn't see this as a sequel to previous films or a re-imagining. It premiered in London at the Odeon Leicester Square on February 25, 2010. It was released in Australia and New Zealand on March 4, 2010, and in the United Kingdom and the United States on March 5 through Walt Disney Pictures in Disney Digital 3-D and IMAX 3-D, as well as in regular theaters.
The film was a huge box office success, one of the first films to gain $1 billion, and set a trend of "adult" fairy tales amongst them Oz the Great and Powerful, and Into the Woods (which also featured Johnny Depp and Frances De La Tour), while also reigniting the trend of live-action fairy tales and fantasy films of its animated classics starting with Maleficent, Cinderella (which also featured Helena Bonham Carter). Despite this, it received mixed reviews by critics and audiences. Many of which compared it to Walt Disney's animated film of the same name, claiming it lacked the nonsense, illogical charm that both the book and the animated film was so famous for.
- 1 Plot
- 2 Cast
- 3 Production
- 4 Soundtracks
- 5 Release
- 6 Reception
- 7 Possible stage adaptation
- 8 Sequel
- 9 Gallery
- 10 External links
The story begins in London with Charles Kingsleigh trying to sell his project to some men. His talk is interrupted by his 6-year old daughter Alice, who had that nightmare again. She tells her father she saw many strange creatures including a dodo bird, a white rabbit wearing a waistcoat, a smiling cat, and a blue caterpillar. Alice wonders if she has gone mad, which Charles responds she is. He tells her that all the best people are mad. Thirteen years later, after her father's death, Alice attends a party with her mother at the Victorian State. Alice learns that it's an engagement party for herself and Hamish, a snobby man Alice dislikes. Alice begins to see a Rabbit in a waistcoat and during Hamish's proposal, Alice follows the White Rabbit. Alice falls down a rabbit hole, full of objects floating in the air, into a room full of many doors. Trying each one, she finds only the smallest door can be opened with the key. Alice notices on the table a "Drink Me" bottle. Believing it to be a dream, she drinks some and shrinks down to 2 feet tall, enough to fit through the door. But the door is locked and she left the key on the table. Alice attempts to retrieve it while unknown voices comment if she's the wrong or right Alice. Alice finds the "Eat Me" cake. She takes a bite and grows to 20 feet. Alice picks up the key and drinks the whole "Drink Me" bottle. She shrinks again and unlocks the door.
Alice enters the door into a vast garden residing in Underland. Exploring it, she runs into the White Rabbit, the Dormouse, Tweedledum, Tweedledee, and the Dodo. The group take Alice to Absolem the caterpillar, where they consult a calendar like scroll detailing the every day in Underland known as the Oraculum. Eventually, on Frabjous day, Alice has to slay the Jabberwocky, but Alice--not wanting to slay the dragon--attempts to consult them she's not the one. Absolem comments that Alice is "Not hardly Alice." Before they can return Alice to her home, the group is ambushed by the Bandersnatch and cards. The White Rabbit and Uilleam the Dodo get captured along with several flamingos. Alice, who's pursued by the Bandersnatch, stands her ground. Mallymkun, the Dormouse, saves Alice by stabbing out the Bandersnatch's eye, but it manages to scar Alice's arm. Alice and the Tweedles carry on until the 'Jubjub Bird' captures the Tweedles.
Meanwhile, the Red Queen screams out in anger that someone stole her tarts, like the rhyme. After finding out it was one of her Frog-Footmen, he is later to be executed. The Queen informs a Fish-Footman to choke the frog's children so she can eat them on a meal with caviar. She is informed by the Knave of Hearts that Alice has returned to Underland, the Red Queen assigns Bayard Hamar, the Bloodhound, to pursue Alice for his imprisoned wife and pups, and his own freedom.
The wandering Alice encounters the Cheshire Cat who bandages her arm and escorts her to the tea party. Alice arrives with Chessur and meets Tarrant Hightopp, the Mad Hatter, along with Thackery Earwicket, the March Hare and Mallymkun. Ilosovic Stayne, the Knave of Hearts, arrives at the tea party. The Hatter quickly shrinks Alice to 6-inches tall and hides her in a teapot. Tarrant manages to persuade Bayard to not reveal Alice's location. Bayard leads the Knave and his troops away. Tarrant begins his journey with Alice on his hat.
On their way, Tarrant tells his sad story on how he lost his clan and the beginning of the Red Queen's reign known as the Horunvendush Day with the loss of the Vorpal Sword. The cards begin to approach cornering Tarrant and Alice at a river and as a last resort, Tarrant throws his hat with Alice on it across the river. Tarrant is captured without resistance and Alice decides to sleep under the hat.
Alice is found by Bayard and in repayment for the events that lead to the capture of Hatter, Alice is taken to the Red Queen's castle and crosses the moat full of severed heads. Bayard throws Tarrant's hat over the wall. While the Queen is playing croquet, Alice is found by Nivens McTwisp, the White Rabbit who gives her some more Upelkuchen cake to make her grow again, but Alice eats too much and grows to 8.5 feet. The Red Queen sees Alice and to avoid suspicion, Alice tells the Queen her name is Um from Umbridge and that people make fun of for her height. The Queen accepts Alice's story and welcomes her to her court. Alice soon finds herself at the Red Queen's side and the Mad Hatter's trail, which eventually the Red Queen is persuaded by Tarrant to become her hatter. Alice is able to retrieve Tarrant's hat and returns it to him.
Bayard manages to arrive at the White Queen's castle and is greeted by the White Queen herself. Bayard delivers the news that Alice is currently residing in the Red Queen's castle.
Alice locates the Vorpal Sword which resides in the domain of the Bandersnatch. On her way, the Knave corners her but Alice manages to get away. One of the Red Queens followers was watching. Retrieving the eye from Mallymkun, Alice returns the eye to the Bandersnatch. Alice finds the case to the Vorpal Sword but is locked. Alice's wound begins to burn and she falls unconscious. Nivens McTwisp retrieves the Oraculum. The next morning while Tarrant is hatting the Red Queen, she hears the news about the Knaves advancement towards Alice. Alice wakes up to find the Bandersnatch watching her. Alice notices a key to the case on its neck. Alice retrieves the key and salvages the Vorpal Sword. The Bandersnatch repays Alice by licking her wound to make it better as a sign of friendship.
The Knave attempts to lie on how it's Um (Alice) that's obsessed with him, which the Queen believes and orders the capture of Um. Alice returns to Tarrant and Mallymkun but right away is charged of seduction. The Knave notices the Vorpal sword and tries to snatch it. Hatter holds the Knave and cards off, but Mallymkun blurts out, "Run, Alice." The Knave, now knowing Alice's true identity, decides to kill her.
Alice runs out to the courtyard but is ambushed by the cards, but the Bandersnatch breaks free of its chain and escapes with Alice in tow. Alice arrives at the White Queen's castle, presenting the Vorpal Sword to the queen. The White Queen then shrinks Alice back down to her original size. Alice meets once again with Absolem who replies about his earlier comment that she was not Alice then but is more like Alice now.
Tarrant and Mallymkum are held in a cell near Bayard's wife and pups. Chessur morths into the cell and wonders if he can have Tarrant's hat after the execution. On the day of Tarrant and Mallymkun's execution, the executor severs Tarrant's head but his body disappears with only the hat floating in the air. Tarrant was substituted by Chessur and the real Hatter is up with the Red Queen. Tarrant reveals that all of the Red Queen's followers are phonies and Tarrant makes a speech for all those willing to rebel against the Bloody Bighead to rise and escape to the White Queen's side. In retaliation, the Red Queen orders the release of the Jubjub Bird which terrorizes the people. Tarrant manages to escape with Mallymkun, the Tweedles, Nivens, and Bayard's wife and pups, and the Cheshire cat returns his hat and asks Alice how her arm is. The Red Queen then tells the Knave to prepare the Jabberwock for battle as it is time to visit her sister.
To find a Champion to do battle against the Jabberwock, many propose but the calendar still shows Alice as the slayer. Alice, not wanting to fight, runs off into the castle where once again she encounters Absolem preparing to go into pupa stage. He chats with her, and Alice finds out that "Underland" is what she mistakenly heard as "Wonderland" during her first visit. Alice realizes that her dreams were really memories and Underland does exist. Frabjous day has finally arrived with both Red and White armies prepared for the epic battle. Alice dons the armor and Vorpal sword. Both armies arrive at a chessboard-like battlefield for the battle between Alice and the Jabberwock. The Jabberwock finally reveals itself to Alice. Alice strikes first slicing off the Jabberwock's tongue, all while doing so, trying to reassure herself that it is not a dream. As the battle between Alice and the Jabberwock carries on, the Jabberwock gains the upper hand. Tarrant assaults the Jabberwock, leading both armies to battle. Alice climbs some ruins of a castle and continues to fight the Jabberwock. Tarrant faces off against the Knave, easily dominating him. Mallymkun and Bayard are assaulted by the Jubjub bird but it gets crushed by a catapulted boulder accidentally fired by one of the Red Queen's soldiers.
Alice manages to get on the back of the Jabberwock, where she is launched into the air, and then cuts off the Jabberwock's head while shouting "OFF WITH YOUR HEAD!" Everyone witnesses the defeat of the Jabberwock. The Red Queen orders her troops to kill Alice but they no longer follow her since the death of both the Jabberwock and Jubjub bird. Chessur crowns the White Queen as once again the queen of Underland. The White Queen banishes her sister to the outlands along with the Knave. The Knave, unable to live with the Red Queen, attempts to kill her but is quickly stopped by Tarrant. As the Red Queen and The Knave are carried off, Tarrant does the Futterwacken dance. The White Queen collects the blood of the Jabberwock which will send Alice back to the human world. Giving her final farewell and reminding them she will return, Alice drinks the blood.
Alice finds herself grasping the edge of the rabbit hole. She climbs up and out of the hole and returns to the party. Alice declines Hamish's proposal, scolds everyone who wanted her to marry him, and chooses to become his father's apprentice. Alice begins her voyage to China, saying goodbye to her family. A blue butterfly lands on Alice's shoulder. Alice smiles and replies, "Hello, Absolem." Absolem then flies off, ending the movie.
- Mia Wasikowska as Alice Kingsleigh. A 19-year old young lady "who doesn't quite fit into Victorian society and structure." Her return to Wonderland "becomes a rite of passage as she discovers her voice and herself." Screenwriter Linda Woolverton researched how young women were expected to behave in the Victorian era and then made Alice the opposite. Although facing pressures to conform to society's expectations, Alice grows into a more strong-willed and empowered heroine who chooses her own path.
- Mairi Ella Challen portrays 6-year-old Alice.
- Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter. Tim Burton explained that Depp "tried to find a grounding to the character, something that you feel, as opposed to just being mad. In a lot of versions, it's a very one-note kind of character and you know his goal was to try and bring out a human side to the strangeness of the character." The orange hair is an allusion to the mercury poisoning suffered by many hatters who used mercury to cure felt. According to Depp: "I think he was poisoned, very, very poisoned, and it was coming out through his hair, through his fingernails and eyes." The Mad Hatter is Alice's ally. Wasikowska says: "They have an understanding about each other. They both feel like outsiders and feel alone in their separate worlds, and have a special bond and friendship." In an interview, Depp stated his experience was "A dream come true" and that the Mad Hatter is like "A mood ring, his emotions are very close to the surface" Illusionary dancer David Bernal doubles for Johnny Depp during the "Futterwacken" sequence near the end of the film.
- Helena Bonham Carter as the Red Queen. Bonham Carter's head is increased in size by three times on screen. The Red Queen is the older sister of the White Queen. She also hates animals, and she proves this by using animals as furniture. Bonham Carter's character is a combination of the Red Queen and the Queen of Hear.
- Anne Hathaway as the White Queen. Her character does not require digital manipulation. Hathaway summed up her character with a caption on a magnet of It's Happy Bunny holding a knife; "Cute but psycho. Things even out." According to Hathaway, "She comes from the same gene pool as the Red Queen. She really likes the dark side, but she's so scared of going too far into it that she's made everything appear very light and happy. But she's living in that place out of fear that she won't be able to control herself." Hathaway describes her interpretation of the White Queen as "a Punk rock, vegan, Pacifism", with inspiration drawn from Blondie, Greta Garbo, and the artwork of Dan Flavin.
- Crispin Glover as the Knave of Hearts. He is the head of the Red Queen's Army. Seven feet, six-inches tall, with a scarred face and a heart-shaped patch covering his left eye, Stayne is an arrogant, tricky character who follows the Red Queen's every order. He's the only one capable of pacifying her and calming her dramatic mood swings. "I am the martial element for the Red Queen," says Glover. "The Red Queen has a fair amount of short-tempered reactions to things that people do, and so my character has to be quite diplomatic." His darker side emerges in the shadows of the castle hallways.
- Lindsay Duncan as Helen Kingsleigh, Alice's mother.
- Leo Bill as Hamish, a man who proposes to Alice.
- Tim Pigott-Smith as Lord Ascot, Hamish's father.
- Geraldine James as Lady Ascot, Hamish's mother.
- Frances de la Tour as Imogene, Alice's delusional aunt.
- Marton Csokas as Charles, Alice's father.
- Jemma Powell as Margaret, Alice's sister.
- Eleanor Gecks and Eleanor Tomlinson as Faith and Fiona, a pair of twins who, when pressured by blackmail, reveal to Alice that she is to be proposed to by Hamish.
Burton's children by Bonham Carter have cameos in the film.
- Stephen Fry as the Cheshire Cat. He is a dapper tabby with the ability to appear and disappear. He is all calm, casual sensuality with a seductive grin that masks his cowardice. It's the cat's disembodied head that first appears to Alice in Tulgey Wood after she's been attacked by the vicious Bandersnatch. He offers to purify the gashes on her arm by licking them. Alice declines, although she allows him to lead her to the Hatter's Tea Party where the Hatter blames him for deserting them on the day the Red Queen seized control of Wonderland. Using his skills and the Hatter's coveted top hat, The Cheshire Cat later finds a way to redeem himself.
- Michael Sheen as the White Rabbit. Nivins McTwisp works for the Red Queen but is also a secret member of the Underland Underground Resistance. He was sent (by the Hatter) to search for Alice. Sheen stated, "The White Rabbit is such an iconic character that I didn't feel like I should break the mold too much."
- Matt Lucas as Tweedledum and Tweedledee. Burton said it was a mix of animation and Lucas. "It's a weird mixture of things which gives his characters the disturbing quality that they so richly deserve."
- Alan Rickman as the Caterpillar. Rickman was filmed while recording his voice in a studio, but his face wasn't composited onto the character's face as originally planned.
- Barbara Windsor as the Dormouse. Burton said that he sought after Windsor for the role because he was a fan of her TV show EastEnders. Her voice sealed the deal for her role as the character.
- Timothy Spall as the Bloodhound.
- Paul Whitehouse as the March Hare.
- Michael Gough as the Dodo.
- Imelda Staunton as the Tall Flowers.
- Jim Carter as the Executioner and the Red Queen's servants.
- Christopher Lee as the Jabberowocky. The Jabberwocky is a vicious and nasty dragon that is owned by the Red Queen. An item in the film called "The Oraculum" suggested that John Tenniel's original design for the Jabberwocky would be used in the film.
Development and writing
Joe Roth was developing Alice in Wonderland in April 2007 at Walt Disney Pictures with Linda Woolverton as screenwriter. That November, Burton signed with Disney to direct two films in Disney Digital 3D, which included Alice in Wonderland and his remake of Frankenweenie. He explained, "the goal is to try to make it an engaging movie where you get some of the psychology and kind of bring a freshness but also keep the classic nature of Alice." On prior versions, Burton said, "It was always a girl wandering around from one crazy character to another, and I never really felt any real emotional connection." His goal with the new movie is to give the story "some framework of emotional grounding" and "to try and make Alice feel more like a story as opposed to a series of events." Burton focused on the Jabberwocky poem as part of his structure. Burton also stated that he doesn't see his version as either a sequel to any existing Alice movie or as a "re-imagining".
|"We wanted somebody who had…it’s hard to put into words, but just had a gravity to her, an internal life, something that you could see the wheels turning. It’s just a simple kind of power to her that we really liked. Not flamboyant, not very showy, but just somebody that’s got a lot of internal life to her. That’s why I picked her."|
This film was originally set to be released in 2009 but was pushed to March 5, 2010. Principal photography was scheduled for May 2008, but did not begin until September and concluded in three months. Scenes set in the Victorian era were shot at Torpoint and Plymouth from September 1 to October 14. Two hundred and fifty local extras were chosen in early August. Locations included Antony House in Torpoint, Charlestown, Cornwall and the Barbican. Motion capture filming began in early October, at Sony Pictures Studios in Culver City, California, though the footage was later discarded. Filming also took place at Culver Studios. Burton said that he is using a combination of live action and animation, without motion capture. He also noted that this was the first time he had done green screen. Filming of the green screen portions, comprising 90% of the film, was completed after only 40 days. Many of the cast and crew felt nauseous as a result of the long hours surrounded by green, with Burton having lavender lenses fitted into his glasses to counteract the effect. Due to the constant need for digital effects to distort the actors' physical appearances, such as the size of the Red Queen's head or Alice's height, visual effects supervisor Ken Ralston cited the film as being exhausting, saying it was "The biggest show I've ever done, [and] the most creatively involved I've ever been."
Sony Pictures Imageworks designed the visual effects sequences. Burton felt 3-D was appropriate to the story's environment. Burton and Zanuck chose to film with conventional cameras, and convert the footage into 3-D during post-production; Zanuck explained 3-D cameras were too expensive and "clumsy" to use, and they felt that there was no difference between converted footage and those shot in the format. James Cameron, who released his 3-D film Avatar on December 10, 2009, criticized the choice, stating, "It doesn't make any sense to shoot in 2D and convert to 3-D."
Alice in Wonderland: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Longtime Burton collaborator Danny Elfman's score was released March 2, 2010. It debuted at #89 on the Billboard Top 200 albums chart. The tracklisting for the album is as follows:
- Alice's Theme 5:07
- Little Alice 1:34
- Proposal/Down the Hole 2:58
- Doors 1:51
- Drink Me 2:48
- Into the Garden 0:50
- Alice Reprise #1 0:26
- Bandersnatched 2:42
- Finding Absolem 2:41
- Alice Reprise #2 0:38
- The Cheshire Cat 2:07
- Alice and Bayard's Journey 4:04
- Alice Reprise #3 0:24
- Alice Escapes 1:07
- The White Queen 0:36
- Only a Dream 1:25
- The Dungeon 2:18
- Alice Decides 3:14
- Alice Reprise #4 1:01
- Going to Battle 2:41
- The Final Confrontation 1:41
- Blood of the Jabberwocky 2:37
- Alice Returns 3:14
- Alice Reprise #5 2:56
- Main article: Almost Alice
Almost Alice is a collection of various artists' music inspired by the film. The lead single, "Alice" by Avril Lavigne, premiered on January 27, 2010, on Ryan Seacrest's radio program. Other singles include "Follow Me Down" by 3OH!3, "Her Name Is Alice" by Shinedown, and "Tea Party" by Kerli. It even featured Robert Smith singing a cover of "Very Good Advice" from the 1951 animated film. The album was released on March 2, 2010.
On February 12, 2010, major UK cinema chains, Odeon Cinemas, Vue and Cineworld, had planned to boycott the film because of a reduction of the interval between cinema and DVD release from the usual 17 weeks to 12. A week after the announcement, Cineworld, who has a 24% share of UK box office, chose to play the film on more than 150 screens. Cineworld's chief executive Steve Wiener stated, "As leaders in 3D, we did not want the public to miss out on such a visual spectacle. As the success of Avatar has shown, there is currently a huge appetite for the 3-D experience". Shortly after, the Vue cinema chain also reached an agreement with Disney, but Odeon had still chosen to boycott in Britain, Ireland, and Italy. On February 25, 2010, Odeon had reached an agreement and decided to show the film on March 5, 2010. The Royal premiere took place at the Odeon Leicester Square in London on February 25, 2010, for the fund-raiser The Prince's Foundation for Children and The Arts where the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall attended. It also did not affect their plans to show the film in Spain, Germany, Portugal, and Austria. The film was released in the UK and U.S., in both Disney Digital 3-D and IMAX 3-D, as well as regular theaters on March 5, 2010.
On June 22, 2009, the first pictures of the film were released, showing Depp as the Mad Hatter, Hathaway as the White Queen, Bonham Carter as the Red Queen and Lucas as Tweedledee and Tweedledum. A new image of Alice was also released. In July, new photos emerged of Alice holding a white rabbit, the Mad Hatter with a hare, the Red Queen holding a pig, and the White Queen with a mouse.
On July 22, 2009, a teaser trailer from the Mad Hatter's point of view was released on IGN but was shortly taken down because Disney claimed that the trailer was not supposed to be out yet. The teaser was also planned to premiere along with a trailer of Robert Zemeckis' film adaptation of A Christmas Carol on July 24, 2009, for G-Force. The following day, the teaser trailer premiered at Comic-Con but the trailer shown was different than the one that leaked. The ComicCon version didn't have the Mad Hatter's dialogue. Instead, it featured "Time to Pretend" by MGMT, and the clips shown were in a different order than in the leaked version. The leaked version was originally to be shown to one of the three Facebook groups used to promote the film that had the most members. The groups used to promote the film are "The Loyal Subjects of the Red Queen", "The Loyal Subjects of the White Queen" and "The Disloyal Subjects of the Mad Hatter."
Also at the Comic-Con, props from the film were displayed in an "Alice in Wonderland" exhibit. Costumes featured in the exhibit included the Red Queen's dress, chair, wig, spectacles and scepter; the White Queen's dress, wig and a small model of her castle; the Mad Hatter's suit, hat, wig, chair and table; Alice's dress and battle armor (to slay the Jabberwocky). Other props included the "DRINK ME" bottles, the keys, an "EAT ME" pastry and Stand-In models of the White Rabbit and March Hare.
A nighttime party area at the Disney's California Adventure theme park was created, called "Mad T Party".
- Main article: Alice in Wonderland (2010 video game)
On July 23, 2009, Disney Interactive Studios announced that an Alice in Wonderland video game, developed by French game studio Étranges Libellules, would be released in the same week as the film for the Wii, Nintendo DS and Microsoft Windows, with the soundtrack being composed by veteran video game music composer Richard Jacques. The Wii, DS, and PC versions were released on March 2, 2010.
- Main article: Alice in Wonderland (2010) (video)
Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment released a 3-disc Blu-ray combo pack (which includes the Blu-ray, DVD and a digital copy), 1-disc Blu-ray and 1-disc DVD on June 1, 2010, in the US and July 1, 2010, in Australia. All versions are presented in 1080p with a 16:9 aspect ratio and Dolby Digital 5.1 HD surround sound. The DVD release includes three short features about the making of the film, focusing on Burton's vision for Wonderland and the characters of Alice and the Mad Hatter. The Blu-ray version has nine additional featurettes centered on additional characters, special effects and other aspects of the film's production. In some confusion, a small number of copies were put on shelves a week before schedule in smaller stores but were quickly removed, although a handful of copies were confirmed purchased ahead of schedule.
In its first week of release (June 1–6, 2010), it sold 2,095,878 DVD units (equivalent to $35,441,297) and topped the DVD sales chart for two continuous weeks. By May 22, 2011, it had sold 4,313,680 units ($76,413,043). It failed to crack the 2010 top ten DVDs list in terms of units sold but reached 10th place on that chart in terms of sales revenue.
Alice in Wonderland received generally mixed reviews. Review aggregate Rotten Tomatoes reports that 51% of critics have given the film a positive review based on 263 reviews, with an average score of 5.7/10 and the consensus "Tim Burton's Alice sacrifices the book's minimal narrative coherence -- and much of its heart -- but it's an undeniable visual treat.". Metacritic, which assigns a weighted average score out of 1–100 reviews from film critics, has a rating score of 53 based on 38 reviews.
Todd McCarthy of Variety praised it for its "moments of delight, humor and bedazzlement", but went on to say, "But it also becomes more ordinary as it goes along, building to a generic battle climax similar to any number of others in CGI-heavy movies of the past few years". Michael Rechtshaffen of The Hollywood Reporter said "Burton has delivered a subversively witty, brilliantly cast, whimsically appointed dazzler that also manages to hit all the emotionally satisfying marks", while as well praising its computer-generated imagery (CGI), saying "Ultimately, it's the visual landscape that makes Alice's newest adventure so wondrous, as technology has finally been able to catch up with Burton's endlessly fertile imagination." Owen Gleiberman of Entertainment Weekly said, "But Burton's Disneyfied 3-D Alice in Wonderland, written by the girl-power specialist Linda Woolverton, is a strange brew indeed: murky, diffuse, and meandering, set not in a Wonderland that pops with demented life but in a world called Underland that's like a joyless, bombed-out version of Wonderland. It looks like a CGI head trip gone post apocalyptic. In the film's rather humdrum 3-D, the place doesn't dazzle — it droops." Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times said in his review that, "Alice plays better as an adult hallucination, which is how Burton rather brilliantly interprets it until a pointless third act flies off the rails." The market research firm CinemaScore found that audiences gave the film an average rating of "A-".
Several reviews criticized the decision to turn Alice into a "colonialist entrepreneur" at the end of the film setting sail for China. Given Britain's role in the Opium Wars during the Victorian era and subjugation of China through "unequal treaties", China expert Kevin Slaten writes, "Not only is it troubling imagery for a female role model in a Disney movie, but it's also a celebration of the exploitation that China suffered for a century."
Impact on fashion
Many female fans enjoyed Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland from a fashion point of view with many desiring the red dress Alice wears when she's in the Red Queen's Castle. Many fashionistas have done several fashion shows based on Tim Burton's movie, believing that the trend will be hot during the summer season soon after the DVD and Blu-ray release.
Box office performance
Alice in Wonderland earned $334,191,110 in North America, as of July 8, 2010, and $691,276,000 in other territories, as of July 10, 2011, for a worldwide total of $1,025,467,110. Worldwide, it is the 42nd highest-grossing film (fifth at the time of its release; behind Avatar, Titanic, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest) and the second highest-grossing 2010 film (behind Toy Story 3). It is the third highest-grossing film starring Johnny Depp, the highest-grossing film directed by Tim Burton and the second highest-grossing children's book adaptation (worldwide, as well as in North America and outside North America separately).
On its first weekend, the film made $220.1 million worldwide, marking the second-largest opening ever for a movie not released during the summer or the holiday period (behind The Hunger Games), the fourth largest for a Disney film and the fourth largest among 2010 films. It dominated for three consecutive weekends at the worldwide box office. On May 26, 2010, its 85th day of release, it became the sixth film ever to surpass the $1-billion-mark and the second film produced and released by Walt Disney Studios that did so.
Alice in Wonderland is the twenty-eighth highest-grossing film but out of the top 100 when adjusted for inflation. It is also the second highest-grossing 2010 film, the second highest-grossing film starring Johnny Depp and the highest-grossing film directed by Tim Burton. The film opened on March 5, 2010, on approximately 7,400 screens at 3,728 theaters with $40,804,962 during its first day, $3.9 million of which came from midnight showings, ranking number one and setting a new March opening-day record. Alice earned $116.1 million on its opening weekend, breaking the record for the largest opening weekend in March (previously held by 300), the record for the largest opening weekend during springtime (previously held by Fast and Furious), the largest opening weekend for a non-sequel (previously held by Spider-Man) and the highest one for the non-holiday, non-summer period. However, all of these records were broken by The Hunger Games ($152.5 million) in March 2012. Alice made the twelfth highest-grossing opening weekend of all time and the third largest for a 3D film. Opening-weekend grosses originating from 3D showings were $81.3 million (70% of total weekend gross). This broke the record for the largest opening-weekend 3D grosses but it was topped by Marvel's The Avengers ($108 million). It had the largest weekend per theater average of 2010 ($31,143 per theater) and the largest for a PG-rated film. It broke the IMAX opening-weekend record by earning $12.2 million on 188 IMAX screens, with an average of $64,197 per site. The record was overtaken by Deathly Hallows – Part 2 ($15.2 million). Alice remained in first place for three consecutive weekends at the North American box office. Alice closed in theaters on July 8, 2010, with $334.2 million.
Outside North America, Alice is the twelfth highest-grossing film, the highest-grossing 2010 film, the fourth highest-grossing Disney film, the second highest-grossing film starring Johnny Depp and the highest-grossing film directed by Tim Burton. It began with an estimated $94 million, on top of the weekend box office, and remained at the summit for four consecutive weekends and five in total. In Japan, it stands as the foreign film that reached 10 billion yen in record time (37 days), that is 13 days fewer than Avatar, which is the second fastest. Japan was the film's highest-grossing country after North America, with $133.7 million, followed by the UK, Ireland and Malta ($64.4 million), and France and the Maghreb region ($45.9 million).
|83rd Academy Awards||Best Art Direction||Robert Stromberg
|Best Visual Effects||Ken Ralston
|Best Costume Design||Colleen Atwood||Won|
|64th British Academy Film Awards||Best Costume Design|
|Best Film Music||Danny Elfman||Nominated|
|Best Production Design||Robert Stromberg|
|Best Special Visual Effects|
|Best Makeup and Hair||Won|
|68th Golden Globe Awards||Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy||Nominated|
|Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy||Johnny Depp|
|Best Original Score||Danny Elfman|
|53rd Grammy Awards||Best Score Soundtrack Album For Motion Picture, Television Or Other Visual Media|
|ChartAttack's 16th Annual Year-End Readers' Poll||Best Song||Avril Lavigne||Won|
|2011 Kids' Choice Awards||Favorite Movie||Nominated|
|Favorite Movie Actor||Johnny Depp||Won|
|MTV Movie Awards||Global Superstar||Nominated|
|Best Villain||Helena Bonham Carter|
|National Movie Awards||Best Performance|
|People's Choice Awards||Favorite Movie|
|Favorite Drama Movie|
|Teen Choice Awards||Best Fantasy Film|
|Best Fantasy Actor||Johnny Depp|
|Scene Stealer – Female||Anne Hathaway|
|Best Fantasy Actress||Mia Wasikowska|
|Best Fight||Mia Wasikowska vs. The Jabberwock||Won|
|37th Saturn Awards||Best Fantasy Film|
|Best Production Design|
|Best Special Effects|
|2010 Scream Awards||Ultimate Scream|
|Best Fantasy Movie|
|Best Director||Tim Burton|
|Best Fantasy Actress||Mia Wasikowska|
|Best Breakout Performance – Female|
|Best Fantasy Actor||Johnny Depp|
|Best Supporting Actress||Anne Hathaway||Won|
|3-D Top Three||Nominated|
|AD First Half of the Year Awards||Best Art Direction|
|Best Visual Effects||Won|
|Best Make Up||Nominated|
|MTV Fan Music Awards||Best Movie Song||Avril Lavigne||Won|
Possible stage adaptation
Walt Disney Theatrical is already in early talks with Burton and screenwriter Linda Woolverton to develop the property as a Broadway musical. Woolverton authored the screenplay for Disney's The Lion King and is also the Tony Award-nominated book writer of Beauty and the Beast, Aida and Lestat. Burton will also render the overall designs for the stage musical. Woolverton will adapt her screenplay for the stage production. Neither a composer nor songwriting team has been chosen yet. Direction and choreography will be done by Rob Ashford. The musical is aiming to make its world-premiere in London.
- Main article: Alice Through the Looking Glass
On December 7, 2012, Variety announced the development of a sequel to Alice in Wonderland, with Linda Woolverton returning to write a screenplay. On May 31, 2013, James Bobin is in talks to direct the sequel have a working title Into the Looking Glass. On July 12, 2013, it was stated that Johnny Depp is close to signing on to reprise his role as Tarrant Hightopp/Mad Hatter, as his production company, Infinitum Nihil, is planning a move from Warner Bros. Pictures to Disney. On November 22, 2013, it was announced that the sequel will be released on May 27, 2016, and that Bobin would direct the film, along with Mia Wasikowska to return as Alice. On January 21, 2014, there was talk that Sacha Baron Cohen will play the villain role.