‘Alice Through The Looking Glass’ (2016, PG)

The  film adaption of Lewis Carroll’s lesser-known sequel to ‘Alice In Wonderland’, is ‘Alice Through The Looking Glass’ a dream of a film or will it leave you feeling like your time was wasted?

After coming back from her long voyage around the world, Alice Kingsleigh (Mia Wasikowska) finds herself travelling back into the land of her dreams – Wonderland – to save her closest and dearest friend, the Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp), from falling ill by travelling through time to save his family, the Hightopps.

Its been six years since this films predecessor, meaning I’ve forgotten much of it. However, ‘Through The Looking Glass’ was understandable without knowledge of what happened in the film before. The plot is clear and concise and not at all confusing as most films that use time-travel tend to be. Of course, this means that those nit-pickers in the audience (myself included) will notice some inconsistencies wishing the plot with the use of time-travel and contradictory explanations of things. However, this isn’t a gritty, sci-fi time-travel movie so I’m not too fussed about the little plot errors and more surprised with how much I enjoyed this movie.

As to be expected with a film from a man calling himself a ‘visionary director’, ‘Through The Looking Glass’ is full of spectacular CGI set-pieces and even a few impressive action sequences. It’s visually stunning and, unlike most ‘visionary’ films, these scenes link together and have a meaningful plot! From what I can remember of 2010’s ‘Alice In Wonderland’, it was surprisingly dark and this film certainly has a lighter-tone. There’s an overriding moral of ‘girl-power’ as Alice becomes her own woman against the men who rule her life.

WARNING! THE BELOW CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR ‘ALICE THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS’. CONTINUE AT READERS’ DISCRETION

I try not to spoil films in my reviews, but I can’t mention one of my favourite parts of this film without spoiling it slightly. All throughout the trailers and advertising for this film, the character of Time (Sacha Baron Cohen) has been shown to be the villain, evil chasing dow the hero, Alice. However, when you watch the film you realise his role is much to the contrary; in fact, I’d argue Alice was the villain. She stole something from Time which almost meant the end of the whole of Wonderland and Time himself, and even though the blame for this tragedy is eventually passed to the Red Queen (Helena Boham Carter), I couldn’t stop thinking about how Alice, the hero of the film, had started it all!

However, I liked the fact that Time turned out not to be the true villain of the story. It surprised me in a way that most films don’t, most things now being spoiled in trailers and in basic speculation, meaning you usually know what’s going to happen in the film before you even enter the cinema. This little twist in the character of Time made me quite enjoy this film, and I’d recommend it to anyone looking for a family-friendly CGI spectacular.

Overall, ‘Alice Through The Looking Glass’ is a great family film with some visually amazing scenes and a few surprises. A few plot errors however mean I’ll have to give ‘Through The Looking Glass’ seven-out-of-ten – definitely give it a watch though!

7/10.

 

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