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Alice In Wonderland (Two-Disc 60th Anniversary Blu-ray/DVD Combo)
BLU-RAY disk
Mar 21, 2011 By: Alex Keen
Alice In Wonderland (Two-Disc 60th Anniversary Blu-ray/DVD Combo) order
Director:
Clyde Geronimi, Wilfred Jackson, Hamilton Luske

Actors:
Kathryn Beaumont
Ed Wynn

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
ALICE IN WONDERLAND is an animated adaptation of the Lewis Carroll classic of the same name. A blond haired little girl is bored with her sister; so, she follows a rabbit down a rabbit hole and into a trippy world of imagination and anthropomorphism. The film was originally released by Disney in 1951 and this BluRay is the 60th Anniversary edition.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
To be completely honest, reviewing this movie was the first time that I had ever seen ALICE IN WONDERLAND. In fact, this may the be the first time Ive seen the entire story from start to finish. Sure, Ive seen that Tom Petty video 100 times; nevertheless, this was my first real experience with the story.

While I wasnt completely surprised by the trippiness of the movie, as the film moved along, I was surprised at how little truly made sense. After some surface-level research Ive discovered importance of this storys nonsensical storytelling. I found this shed some light on what I saw and made me comfortable with the idea that I really wasnt supposed to completely get it.

From an entertainment perspective, I found a majority of the music well-crafted and enjoyable. The music is obviously from another era; however, that does not keep it from providing some charming moments. There is a distinct difference between the musical animation from the mid 20th Century, the late 20th Century, and the beginning of the 21st Century. Back in the time of ALICE IN WONDERLAND, music was meant to be playful but elegant. The same can not be said for most of the Disney catalog in the modern era (sometimes playful and sometimes elegant, but rarely both at the same time).

The voice talent here is good for the most part but I found the actress behind Alices voice to be quite underwhelming. For such a beloved classic, I was expecting to hear a performance that aged well. Instead, Alices voice was a bit grating and shrill for my taste. Was she bearable? Yes. However, I think for the modern viewer she might be a bit off-putting. I understand that Kathryn Beaumont was younger than 13 when she recorded her part and this truly is meant to be a slam on the actress. I just think the performance is a fair representation of the era; but one that does not fit very well in modern times.

Finally, I did enjoy the complex animation of ALICE IN WONDERLAND. There is quite a bit to see here and at time is a feast for the eyes. The animation here is very fluid, colorful, and provides layers of entertainment. This helps with the psychedelic qualities as well as the appeal for kids looking for imaginative animation.
THE EXTRAS
Included on this release are several new features including a featurette with the original voice talk of Alice, Kathryn Beaumont; some new reference footage that hadnt been released before; an interactive game featuring the Queen of Hearts roses; and a pencil test of Alice shrinking. Furthermore, the traditional DVD extras are also on this disc. For the ardent fan who has seen this movie tens (or hundreds) of times, these extras are interesting enough to justify either renting or buying this movie. The hour long documentary is especially fascinating to see and pratically good enough to be its own release! I can completely see the extra's importance for the die hard Alice-geek looking for new content.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
I doubt that I will be ever be converted into a hardcore ALICE IN WONDERLAND fan. With that said, I am impressed by the detailed animation and the composition of this film. For that reason alone, this film deserves its recognition in the animation hall of fame. However, from the perspective of character development and performance, I had hoped for something a bit more compelling and complex. Considering this was meant for kids and not all audiences, I am willing to accept that I am not the audience for this film. Ultimately, thats just fine.
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