Posts Tagged ‘Alice in Wonderland’
Screenwriters: Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman, Steve Purcell, Irene Mecchi
Length: 1h 33m
Synopsis: Merida (Macdonald) is a Scottish princess, but you wouldn’t know it to look at her. With long, unkempt, fiery red hair and a fondness for tomboyish hobbies she doesn’t often get along with her mother the Queen (Thompson) who, loving though she may be, relentlessly stresses the importance of obedience and propriety. Merida’s crude but kind father, King Fergus (Connolly), plays the peacemaker whose mannerisms and childish immaturity are not the example Queen Elinor wants for their daughter, yet the three get along fairly merrily all the same. One day, however, Elinor schedules a competition for young men seeking Merida’s hand in marriage. The princess impulsively becomes infuriated. A heated argument is had between the two, and in the midst of Merida’s outburst she runs off into the woods and discovers a secluded cabin where a temperamental witch (Walters) dwells. In an effort to change her fate Merida has the witch conjure a spell that would cause Elinor to change – and boy does it ever. The Queen turns into a giant bear, the land’s most feared and hunted creature. Merida is immediately remorseful, but before too many suns have set she and her mother must work together to break the spell before it becomes permanent. Will the rambunctious teenager save her mother’s fate in time, and succeed in mending the bond broken between them?
Director: Tim Burton
Length: 1h 53m
Synopsis: Barnabas Collins (Depp) grew up an aristocrat in 19th century New England, heir to a fishing enterprise and loved by the community that benefitted from it. In love with a gentle beauty named Josette (Heathcote), and hounded by the lustful Angelique (Green), Barnabas attempted to let down his physical admirer in order to marry his true desire. Unbeknownst to him, however, Angelique was a witch, and she would cause Josette’s mysterious death and give Barnabas an eternity of suffering by cursing him to be a vampire and burying him until the end of days. But on one day in 1972, he would be freed by excavators and able to return to his home. There he meets his descendants, Roger (Miller), Carolyn (Moretz), David (McGrath), new head of the household Elizabeth (Pfeiffer), and shrink in residence Dr. Hoffman (Carter). Low and behold, Angelique has survived the last two-hundred years better than the Collins’ name, becoming the town’s newest idol. As best he can as a vampire, and without inciting the townspeople as such, Barnabas must restore luster to his family name whilst also evading the frustrated assaults of Angelique. In his efforts he may also come to finally discover how the witch robbed him of his once true love.
Please stop pushing 3D.
The Hollywood Reporter has revealed that Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides has underachieved in terms of earning first weekend grosses for 3D showings, with more audiences opting for 2D prints. Now, with $90.1 million earned its first weekend in just the U.S., and over $400 million to be earned worldwide by the end of its first full week, the film can hardly be considered unsuccessful. However, numbers show that American audiences’ interest in 3D could be waning. What everyone is trying to figure out is whether fewer 3D tickets sold means audiences are no longer seeing the value in 3D technology or they are becoming less inclined to fork over the extra cash for a 3D ticket.
Guess what Hollywood – if Americans are indeed sick of 3D it’s because of both reasons.
The list of recent movies released in 3D where the extra dimension actually added to the viewing experience is extremely short, including only Avatar, Tron: Legacy, How to Train Your Dragon, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, Coraline, and Monster House. Notice how four of those six are 100% animated, and the two “live action” films are ones which were greatly reliant on digital effects to the point where one could justifiably consider them mostly animated as well. This is not a coincidence, and such a pattern does not help the argument that 3D is the future of the medium. Personally, I won’t give that claim any consideration until I see a truly live action film wow me like the six just mentioned.
There is a big debate going on about the influx of 3D movies that has been going on the past few years, and continues going on strong. Some claim that the technology has already reduced itself to a gimmick, while others believe wholeheartedly that it is the future of cinema. Who is right? Can anyone be wrong? In order to come to any kind of conclusion, we first have to look at the facts.
Much of this topic comes down to economics. An article in Variety by Pamela McClintock examines this angle in-depth, and answers a lot of questions regarding why the film industry is so keen on this latest and greatest technology. To put it simply, there is a lot of money in it. The unfathomable success of James Cameron’s Avatar has driven a number of studios into a frenzy, spurring them to make some 2D movies into 3D in order to cash in on the popularity. The upcoming Clash of the Titans (April 2nd) is one such film that was made into 3D at the 11th hour. For some, these half-baked conversions are one of the major points of contention. The claim is that such last-minute conversions are adding to the thinking that 3D technology is nothing more than a money-grabbing gimmick. This may be true, but consider this: producing a film in 3D from the get-go adds $20 million to its budget almost automatically, while converting a film into 3D during post-production only adds $10 million to the budget (some studios even claim $5 million). The issue over post-production conversions, then, may not entirely be an issue about getting more money from audiences, but also about saving money. So, it is not completely about the first goal of business (making profit) but also the third (reducing cost). But what about the second goal (increasing revenue)? Read the rest of this entry »
Between last October and now there have been several high-profile movies released that touch upon the subject of teenage girls trying to fight to avoid their planned futures – or to be more accurate, their futures which others have planned for them. Some examples of these movies are An Education, Whip It, and the recently released Alice in Wonderland.
Jenny (Carey Mulligan), the lead girl in An Education, sees herself as different from the other girls in her high school class, perhaps in terms of maturity, worldliness, intelligence, or simply personal goals. Unlike the other girls in her class she, like so many teenagers, begins to show contempt for the scholastic system within which she sits. Told to be ladylike and that her education is of the utmost importance, Jenny tires of hearing how the only way to success is through the strictly mapped pathway that the education system provides. As a result she rebels against structure and experiments with uncertainty. Likewise, Alice (Mia Wasikowska) is trying to avoid a marriage that both her mother and society have set up for her, either ignorant or indifferent to the fact that she has no romantic feelings for her suitor. The sole rationale behind the union is that she is both young and attractive and her fiancé-to-be is financially comfortable. But worse, Alice is expected to bear the young man’s children so as to fulfill her social role as a woman. Naturally, when she finds herself falling down the rabbit hole and trapped again within the world of Wonderland, she’s not very eager to get home.
Both of these films touch on the same subject occurring at different time periods (Jenny the 1960s, Alice the Victorian era – both in England), which is the illumination of the social role of young women and their rebellion against that role. The question becomes: why do these movies – released within months of each other – ask for our interest in this matter? Is it that the issue is so inescapably attributed to our conception of the average teenager? Moreover, is the issue so inescapably attributed to our conception of the average teenage girl? Bliss (Ellen Page), the main protagonist in Drew Barrymore’s Whip It, is forced to deal with wanting a different future than what her mother has planned for her (roller derby vs. beauty pageants). It would appear that the society within which Bliss resides is not pressuring her to fulfill any kind of specific social role, but she nevertheless feels naturally compelled to resist being led on any path that she herself has not devised. If these representations of teenage girls, depicted across three different time periods, are indeed intended to be considered authentic and representative of the archetype they illustrate, then one must ask what the relevancy is in bringing these characters to our attention at this point in time. Read the rest of this entry »
Director: Tim Burton (Big Fish, Charley and the Chocolate Factory)
Screenwriter: Linda Woolverton (The Lion King, Homeward Bound); based from characters by Lewis Carroll
Cast: Mia Wasikowska (Amelia), Johnny Depp (The Pirates of the Caribbean), Helena Bonham Carter (Sweeny Todd), Anne Hathaway (Rachel Getting Married), Crispin Glover (Charlie’s Angels)
Length: 1h 48m
Synopsis: The same Alice that we’ve come to know from Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass is back, only this time she’s 19. As a young lady of moderate social status and peaking beauty she is expected by her family and peers to wed a Lord and secure her financial future. However before she offers an answer of “yes” or “no” she becomes lost down a familiar rabbit hole all over again, and finds that those in Wonderland have been waiting for her to fulfill a different destiny. Read the rest of this entry »
ShockTillYouDrop.com published their findings of when they visited the set of the new Nightmare on Elm Street remake. The film is meant to reboot what had become a tired franchise, which was launched with Wes Craven’s career-defining 1984 film of the same title. Michael Bay’s Platinum Dunes production studio is the creative entity behind the movie, which also helped create The Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake back in 2003 as well as the recent Friday the 13th remake.
The set visit documents various aspects of the new film, from the look of the actors, the attitude of the creative minds behind the project, and the differences between this picture and its original. One feature of the film that its director Samuel Bayer stresses was how it’s trying to be legitimately scary, not “fun horror” like the remake of Friday the 13th.
The article includes many quotes from director Bayer and producer Bradley Fuller, which do well to explain exactly what their aims are with this film. According to the article, Bayer was pursued feverishly by Platinum Dunes and Newline Cinema because of his knack for being a visual storyteller (almost all of his credits are for directing numerous music videos). As Spike Jonze has proven (Where the Wild Things Are, Adaptation, Being John Malkovich), a background in directing music videos is not a bad one.
The article overall proves very revealing – so much so that if you’re not one for spoilers then you might want to avoid it. Likewise, if you can’t get enough information about this remake (which opens April 30th) then you’ll want to check it out ASAP.
ComingSoon.net interviews Johnny Depp about his role as the Mad Hatter in Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland, as well as some other upcoming roles. The film opens March 5th.