Thursday, October 2, 2014

Just a Dream


We all know the silly children's film that starts with a girl named Alice visiting a place called Wonderland, but she wakes up and it was all just a dream. Well, what if it wasn't just a dream? In 2010, Disney released the story that Alice had not just been dreaming, but instead she had just been told that her imagination was too wild and that nothing about this magical place, wonderland, was real. This life changing tale begins with Alice's engagement party. She is surrounded by people who only see black and white and have never had an imagination. So, rather fitting, they are all in very dull clothing with their hair pulled back tight, for they are all very uptight as well. They are all back in a time when there were still Lords to the land and basically arranged marriages by their parents, so all of this clothing, hair, and makeup is extremely necessary for this scene. 

When Alice first appears in wonderland,  everything is very realistic looking for how unrealistic it truly is. At first some of the characters lost their ethos because even though they are the same characters, the plot is different.

Everyone keeps repeating to Alice that she is the not the one, not the true Alice. While others will make a huge deal of her being in Wonderland because she will be their savior. Then, it comes back to her and Alice finds out that it was not a dream she was seeing, but a memory. Alice had been to Wonderland before, and now she will be the one to save it.

I Draw special attention to two occasions in the movie where the special effects are used greatly. It was said that "the digital revolution is whipping through our lives like a Bengali typhoon," (Lunsford 426) and this movie is proof of this. Since they are in wonderland the whole entire movie is made up of special effects, but these occasions are just plain mad. 

When Alice first meets the Mad Hatter, he is there along with the hare, Cheshire cat, and a mouse. All of which are talking. There is a spooky background, fog everywhere, and all of the characters are rambling and talking cryptic. They made some creatures very big, and some very small. Then the bad guy shows up, which is foreshadowed by the eerie mood created by the fog. They all act ridiculously crazy to distract the bad guy. And it is then revealed that the Queen of Heart's worker, the bloodhound, is helping them.

The second scene I am paying attention to is Alice’s final scene in wonderland. She is preparing for battle and riding the creature that left the queen for her because of her kindness. She rides into battle with the white queen by her side, and then the movie shows the queen of hearts and her card troops marching in as well. They meet in a dead and barren place where they send in their “champions” to fight. The queen sends a jabberwocky that is an evil, fearsome, dragon like creature. And Alice, as the other "champion," has to fight it. The fight begins, and relatively short into it the Mad Hatter interferes with the fight so now not only is Alice fighting the dragon, but all the creatures and knights are fighting each other too. The final battle scene is on higher grounds then everyone else, needless to say it is higher because it is more important, in a place that looks like ancient ruins. Alice keeps climbing higher and higher till she gets to the top, now the dragon is over her pecking down to bite her, she then jumps on it and as it throws her into the air she dramatically screams “off with your head.” Which is ironic because this creature is a pawn for the queen, and the queen of hearts takes off everyone’s head. Everyone watches in awe as Alice kills the Jabberwocky, and realizes that the good side has won. Now that she has killed this beast, no is trapped under the rule of the terrible queen of hearts anymore. The Cheshire cat then takes the crown and puts it on the White Queen. 

Many movies that are filled with this many special effects are "full of sound and fury, signifying nothing: pointless chases, explosions, gratuitous violence, explosions, lots of speed, explosions, and just for good measure, more explosions" (Gionnetti 35). But this film used all of the special effects where they were necessary. It all had a purpose, and the special effects all achieved the purpose of enhancing the movie. This effected my viewership for the better because it wasn't just made to be loud and action packed, it was made to me this wonderful, magic world.

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