Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Alice (1988) by Jan Svankmajer...

Alice is a 1988 Czech surrealist fantasy film by Jan Švankmajer. It retells Lewis Carroll's first 'Alice' book, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, in Švankmajer's unique style. The film combines live action with stop motion animation. The movie is considered a cult movie. Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reports that 100% of critics have given the film a positive review, with a rating average of 7.8 out of 10 based on 13 reviews.

What i love about Svankmajer's work is his particularly unique style, and Alice is definitely no exception to his other works. I became very fond of the characters from start to end which never failed to fascinate me. The white rabbit was a beautiful masterclass of his stop motion animation skills and the transition between the actress and doll was extremely uncanny. Particular scenes that i enjoyed in this film were the white rabbit coming to life, which was beautifully thought and animated. The doormouse cooking on Alice's head which was another clever scene, as the mouse made use of her hair and other utensils to start a fire. The scene with Alice falling down the bucket and into the elevator was so dark and magical, as we watched her slowly work her way down each level. Also, particular characters that i fell in love with were the white rabbit, which was made from a dead stuffed rabbit, the caterpillar, which was made from a sock and teeth, and the march hare, which was a stuffed wind-up toy that moved around on wheels. Overall, Alice is another masterclass of Svankmajer's beautiful stop motion skills and unique style, incorporating everything that i've loved from his animated shorts into a beautifully constructed feature-length film that does Lewis Carroll's novel a lot of justice. This is by far one of my favourite adaptations of Alice in Wonderland and definitely the most stunning visually.

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