ALICE THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS
Direction: James Bobin
Actors: Johnny Depp, Mia Wasikowska
An underwhelming sequel to Tim Burton’s 2010 take on Lewis Carroll’s trippy children’s story, Alice In Wonderland, hurtles the headstrong heroine (Australian actress Mia Wasikowska, reprising her role) back into the fantastical realm of Underland (why, for heaven’s sake, change the name?).
Having returned from sailing the pirate-infested high seas, Alice right away embarks on a new mission. She must now win a race against the Lord of Time (Sacha Baron Cohen, suitably wacky as the part-human, part-clock character) in order to help Mad Hatter (Depp, much too mannered) reunite with his estranged family.
The script also sees the return of several illustrious cast members from the earlier iteration, including Anne Hathaway (White Queen), Helena Bonham Carter (the rival sibling, Red Queen) and Lindsay Duncan (Alice’s widowed mother).
More crucially, the late Alan Rickman once again voices the Blue Caterpillar. Alas, this would be the final performance of the British thespian, to whom the film is dedicated.
Read: Alan Rickman, RIP
Incoming director James Bobin (of the two Muppets movies) isn’t as fanciful or visually imaginative as his celebrated predecessor, Tim Burton. Thankfully, Burton’s regular collaborator Danny Elfman provides a wondrous background score.
Curiously lacking a sense of the ‘uncommon nonsense’ and freakish fun of the source novel, Alice Through The Looking Glass falls short of its potential.