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My favorite movie is a movie that I doubt we will discuss in class. It’s a fairly recent movie; I saw it twice in theaters (but not in 3D, although it would probably be incredible). My favorite movie has all of the characteristics of a great movie. It features talking animals, villains, and a protagonist with a relatable coming of age story. The movie also includes a subtle love story and the prevalent idea that nothing is impossible. What movies are coming to your mind? Let me help you out a little bit more. The talking animals include Mallymkun the Dormouse, Absolem, White Rabbit, and most notably, Cheshire Cat; the villain is the Red Queen, and the protagonist is Alice who is involved with the Mad Hatter. Yes, my favorite movie is Alice In Wonderland (2010, directed by Tim Burton). In this movie, Alice (played by the up-and-coming Mia Wasikowska) is 19 years old and returns to Underland. She is supposed to defeat the Jabberwocky so that the White Queen (played by Anne Hathaway) can regain her crown from her evil sister, the Red Queen (fittingly played by Helena Bonham Carter). Alice doesn’t want (or believe she is able) to slay the dragon-like beast known as the Jabberwocky. She’s also fed up with people making decisions for her. Immediately before her return to Underland, she receives a marriage proposal from a well respected lord; but the marriage had previously been arranged without Alice’s knowledge. When she reaches Underland, she faces even more expectations. Alice is my favorite movie because it depicts the truth that people will always have certain expectations of you, but you have the ultimate choice on whether to meet those expectations. Also, Alice believes that it will be impossible to slay the Jabberwocky. She even believes that it is impossible that Underland exists. Right before she finally kills the Jabberwocky, she conjures up some old advice from her father; he used to believe in at least seven impossible things before breakfast. Finally, she succeeds in slaughtering the Jabberwocky and peace returns to Underland. Alice has the choice to remain in Underland. The Hatter (brilliantly played by Johnny Depp) expects Alice to stay… but she has other expectations to face and knows she must return home. Even when she returns home, she rejects the expectations of the hundreds of people who were awaiting her acceptance of Hamish’s proposal. Ultimately, Alice goes into business with her father’s old business partner and takes the company to new heights. I think that my love for Alice reflects my longing to be a free agent; my grandparents are extremely important to me and I want to meet their expectations but I also want to pave my own way in the world and live for myself. I also simply wish that everything could always be beautifully colored, unpredictable, and mad just as in Underland. Who wouldn’t want a gray and blue cat to materialize for tea time… or a mysterious blue caterpillar to give you advice (while blowing smoke in your face) to help you discover who you are and that you are capable of greatness?

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6 thoughts on “

  1. Interesting pick. I wonder why you chose this Alice film instead of past ones like Disney’s Alice in Wonderland or any of the previous renditions? I understand they are all different, but what draws you to this one? If it is the vivid and sometimes ridiculous characters, mixed in with a coming-into-oneself story, then I’m curious why you picked Alice over other stories such as, say, the Hunger Games or Beetlejuice?

    • It’s funny that you mentioned The Hunger Games and Beetlejuice because THG is definitely in my top 100 and Beetlejuice was a movie I really loved as a kid. I’ve always had a connection with Disney’s Alice in Wonderland…it’s one of my favorite Disney films. Tim Burton’s Alice is the only remake that has really caught my eye. It’s just so brilliantly done and it’s more like a continuation of Disney’s version, rather than a remake.

      • Well then I’ll bet you’re excited for the sequel. Johnny has signed on 🙂 And I agree that Tim Burton has that spark he adds to his movies. It’s one of the reasons he is one of my favorite directors/writers/producers.

  2. The deeper meanings you have drawn from the film is really good. I’ve seen the remake once, but in hindsight, I suppose I watched it to see how incredible the animation, characters, colors, and the like would be compared to the original, rather than capturing the essence of story. There’s a sense of optimism of never giving up on accomplishing something, but at the same, it perhaps transcends idealism into a more realistic idea, where understanding how characteristics of ourselves can lead to success (compared to attributing characteristics not of us when trying to accomplish something). Also, the personal meanings you gather is a nice perspective.

  3. I have not seen this version of Alice. Don’t worry about it being a relatively new movie. All old things were once new things and a film does not have to have reached acceptance as a classic to be your favorite. I like the way you related your own life to the qualities you found in the movie. About that, I was close to my grandparents too. I cherish the memories I have of them, don’t lose that closeness. However, they love you and they know you need wings as well as roots. So don’t be afraid to be your own person and fly.

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