Alice Through the Looking Glass: What You Need To Know
Six years on from Alice in Wonderland, Tim Burton's weird and wonderful reimagining of Lewis Carroll's famously hallucinogenic children's tale, a film based on Carroll's sequel Through the Looking Glass arrived earlier this year, this time with a new director and some notable additions to the cast.
Alice Through the Looking Glass lands in stores on DVD and Blu-ray on Monday (October 3rd), here's everything you need to know...
Who's in it?
Alice In Wonderland had an incredible cast and many of the actors reprise their roles in the sequel, including Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Mia Wasikowska, Anne Hathaway and Matt Lucas, as well as some of those making voice contributions for the film's animated characters, with Stephen Fry, Paul Whitehouse, Barbara Windsor, Martin Sheen and the late Alan Rickman all making an appearance.
New additions include Sascha Baron Cohen, Richard Armitage, Rhys Ifans and Andrew Scott, while this time around it's James Bobin seated in the director's chair, although Tim Burton does retain a role as producer.
What's the plot?
After her adventures in Underland, Alice Kingsleigh has spent the last three years sailing the seas with her father in the Far East. When she eventually returns to London, she learns that her former fiancee Hamish Ascot (Leo Bill) has taken over her father's business and wants Alice to agree to sell him her father's ship, in exchange for keeping her family home.
Facing a decision that she feels unable to make, Alice runs away and meets her old friend Absolom, the blue catapilllar, following him as he disappears through a mirror and finding herself back in Underland once again.
When she arrives she finds that the Mad Hatter (Depp) is unwell, the result of an attack by the feared Jabberwocky that has left his family missing. The White Queen (Bonham Carter) summons Alice and tasks her with visiting Time (Baron Cohen), a godlike half-human with the ability to control time itself through a device called the Chronosphere. Alice tries to persuade Time to allow her to travel back into the past to save the Hatter's family. When Time refuses to help, Alice steals the Chronosphere and travels back on her own, only to discover the truth about what really happened to the Hatter's family.
Does it deliver?
Anyone who loved Tim Burton's film will find that the look, feel and humour of the first film remains intact here, with Sascha Baron Cohen and Rhys Ifans proving themselves worthy additions to the cast. Helena Bonham Carter is once again a standout performer in her role as the White Queen and thanks to Alice's time-travelling adventures we also get to explore her background and character in a a little more detail this time around.
As anyone who remembers the steady decline if the Batman films in the 1990s before Christopher Nolan have the series a much-needed reboot will testify, helming a sequel to a Tim Burton film is no easy task, but James Bobin's experience in directing comedy series like Flight of the Conchords serves him well here and he's made a worthy follow-up to Burton's original film. For anyone who enjoyed Alice in Wonderland, this will be another slice of hallucinogenic fun.