A Rare Disney Misstep – Alice Through the Looking Glass (2016)

Nobody was asking for this.  So time has gone by, and Alice (Mia Wasikowska) is now the captain of her late father’s ship.  The goings on in the real world really don’t matter though, and she stumbles back to Wonderland to find that the Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp) is ill and not break dancing (never forget).  She must figure out how to travel through time to save him.  This movie is the exception to the rule, because Disney has been on an absolute tear with really great movies recently, from Star Wars to Marvel to their animated masterpieces.  The buck stops here, and this is a big budget turkey if I’ve ever seen one.

2It’s a huge mistake, and I seriously doubt that they will be continuing this series any further.

Now I wasn’t a fan of the first movie; it was all over the place from a tonal standpoint, and I consider it to be Tim Burton at his worst.  But that is beside the point, as it made money by the truckload; people forget, but it is currently sitting as being the 24th highest grossing movie of all time worldwide.  You know that they would have to come back for more, but they waited too long to capitalize, and now they’re paying the price in the public’s lost interest.  It has honestly reached the point where if I see Johnny Depp’s name in the credits, I brace myself for the worst.  Between this and Yoga Hosers, you can hardly blame me, and he is dreadful in this too.  There are tons of characters featured here with nothing to do; the entire cast list from the first movie returns, and they’re all lumped together in one misfit blob.  They even got Alan Rickman back and did him the disservice of making this the final role that he will ever be credited for.  Let me tell you exactly what this movie is: it is a bunch of rejected production artwork from the first movie with a five dollar script.  No scene flows neatly into the next, and it is jumping all over the place.

1And no, that’s not just because this involves time travel.

I streamed this on Netflix and it reached a point where the buffering made the picture drop in quality and I quite honestly didn’t care.  This all wraps up with a big finale where everything gets coated in clay color dirt, and it just looks like they ran out of money.  The script is underwritten, and this is the movie that dares to show you why the Red Queen is the way that she is.  Let me tell you, it’s the worst villain back story I’ve ever heard in my life, and I don’t think I am being hyperbolic here; I really can’t think of a single villain with a worse origin story.  They try to work this Butterfly Effect plot device that just feels like an excuse to further the story, and they have put together one wildly unnecessary movie that never needed to see the light of day.  If you are considering watching this, please just go rewatch the 1951 animated film instead.

Alice Through the Looking Glass (2016) *

– Critic for Hire


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