Tim Burton's Wild Imagination Put to Good Use in Alice in Wonderland
- Friday, March 05, 2010
Drugs/Alcohol: Alice drinks a mysterious substance that makes her small, a few bites of a particular cake make her grow. Absalom, a furry blue caterpillar, is rarely seen without puffing on his hookah, which makes him constantly surrounded by smoke.
Language/Profanity: None, aside from the British use of "bloody" as an expletive.
Sex/Nudity: Alice sees her brother-in-law kissing a woman who's not his wife. One of the creatures has freakishly large breasts (which actually turn out to be fake). The Red Queen's consort hits on Alice, and later in the story tells the queen that Alice hit on him. After getting wind of that, the Red Queen suggests she be arrested for unlawful seduction.
Violence: Like many of Tim Burton's films, there's a decidedly dark tone and a few scary, action-packed scenes in Alice in Wonderland that would be particularly frightening to younger children. Starting things off is Alice's fated fall down that rabbit hole. Not only does she bounce off the furniture, but her life is threatened by a plummeting piano that could've easily crushed her. Upon arriving in Wonderland (or is it "Underland"?), there are many disturbing realities. In addition to the Red Queen's "Off with their head!" declarations for anyone who fails to satisfy her every passing whim (and her general mistreatment of Tweedledee and Tweedledum, not to mention the animals, like the pig's belly she uses as an ottoman), there are numerous potentially perilous foes. First off, there's the Bandersnatch (a feline-esque beast with some freakishly sharp teeth that leave angry, festering wounds on Alice's arm at one point) and the Jabberwocky, the scariest, fire-breathing foe who's intent on ending Alice's life. In one scene, the Bandersnatch also loses an eye (thanks to a sword-bearing dormouse who stabs him and plucks its out). There's a big (but mostly bloodless) battle at movie's end with Alice and the Jabberwocky at the center of it.
Christa Banister is a full-time freelancer writer, specializing in music, movies and books-related reviews and interviews and is the author of two novels, Around the World in 80 Dates and Blessed Are the Meddlers. Based in St. Paul, Minn., she also weighs in on various aspects of pop culture on her personal blog.
For more information, including her upcoming book signings and sample chapters of her novels, check out her Website.
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