Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Kerli 'Tea Party' Official Music Video

From the Almost Alice OST Soundtrack.

Previously: Avril Lavigne's Almost Alice Single

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Monday, March 29, 2010

Papercraft Mad Hatter, UK Events, and Philosophy

Another one I missed somehow in all the excitement. Alice in Wonderland and Philosophy. This is a book in a series which seeks to popularize philosophy by using pop culture as a frame of reference to discuss it (I'm guessing sort of like the Tao of Pooh did for Taoism.) It looks pretty interesting. Among the topics covered are: The nature of reality (Cheshire Cat), if you can make words mean whatever you want (Humpty Dumpty), and if Alice herself is a feminist icon.

A rather long list of Alice in Wonderland related kids events happening in the UK. This was found on a page where a Guardian writer tells about taking her daughter to see a Mad Hatter event at the Antony House in Cornwall, where parts of the Tim Burton movie were filmed.

Paper Wonderland has a papercraft of the American McGee's Alice video game Mad Hatter. (Thanks to Sylvie for sending me corrected information!)

Previously: The Mystery of Lewis Carroll Book Review

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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Giveaway: Alice in Wonderland Wii Game

Many thanks to Disney Interactive for sending me copies of this game to review and give away. I've got one to give away. Here is a really good interview with Phillip James, the producer of the game. Look for my review of the game, coming soon. To enter, simply leave a comment here.

What is up for grabs:
Alice in Wonderland video game for the Wii.

Who will win: One winner will be selected. To enter, leave a comment on this post. If you are logged in to Google make sure your email is visible in your profile. Otherwise make sure that you leave an email address. (I've been trying to find a way around this and can't. If anybody knows of a way to add an email field to the Blogger comment form, please let me know!) Entrants must live in the US or Canada (my apologies to everybody else).

When and how the winner will be chosen:
The giveaway ends two weeks away at midnight, on Tuesday, March 13. The winner will be selected randomly using a random number generated by

Notification: Winner will be notified by email.

Previously: Alice in Wonderland Games for PC, Wii, and DS

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Friday, March 26, 2010

Alice in Costumeland and Legoland

Kind of late on the draw with this one. It's Colleen Atwood, the costume designer for Alice in Wonderland, talking about a bunch of the costumes from the movie.

 Tommy Williamson (a.k.a. GeekyTom) works for CafeFX as an effects artist where he worked on turning Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland into a 3D movie. After the wrap, Tommy built some of the characters from the movie out of LEGO bricks. Via

Previously: Interview with Colleen Atwood

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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Images of Other Alice Tonner Dolls

Entertainment Earth has images of the new Alice in Wonderland Tonner dolls. They are available for pre-order here: Red Queen and White Queen at Entertainment Earth. The White Queen looks really amazing. Here are the descriptions:

Red Queen
  • "Off with their heads!"
  • Amazing Tonner Doll of actress Helena Bonham Carter as Iracebeth, the vile Red Queen.
  • From Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland.
  • Amazing likeness. Phenomenal clothing.
  • Your friends will lose their heads when they see this in your collection!
"Off with their heads!" Helena Bonham Carter breathes extraordinary life into Iracebeth, the vile Red Queen in Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland. This phenomenal doll from Tonner captures her unique, authorized likeness and comes clad in rich gown with a soft, flocked bodice, gleaming stomacher with contrast stitching, high-standing collar, slim lamé sleeves with ruche overlay and ribbon trim, a decadent brocade skirt with custom heart embroidery on the front inset panel, full petticoat, custom printed card-suit tights, lace-up faux-leather gold boots with black lace overlay, and a jeweled crown. Your friends will lose their heads when they see this in your collection!

White Queen
  • Anne Hathaway is a vision of beauty as Mirana, The White Queen.
  • Doll based on Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland movie.
  • Exceptional detailing. Extraordinary attire.
  • A truly spectacular Tonner Doll for your collection!
In Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland movie, Anne Hathaway is a vision of beauty as Mirana, The White Queen. Her likeness is exquisitely captured in this breathtaking Tonner Doll that arrives wearing a frothy white confection, sprinkled with silver snowflakes and trimmed with glittering mesh and silky ribbon. The dress is accented with a glittering chiffon apron and downy chiffon bow in the back. Around her neck, she wears a shimmering necklace of rhinestones, trimmed with net ruffles. Pantyhose and white faux-leather boots are also included. A truly spectacular doll for your collection!

As discussed previously, there is also an Alice Kingsley Tonner doll and a Mad Hatter. We're still waiting for a picture of the Mad Hatter Tonner doll. The Alice Kingsley Doll is also available at Amazon: Alice in Wonderland Alice Kingsley Tonner Doll

Previously: Alice Tonner Dolls are Coming

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Monday, March 22, 2010

Monday is as Good an Unbirthday as Any Other

Interesting video on the green room technique that was used to make Alice in Wonderland 2010.

If you own a Barnes & Noble Nook ebook reader, you can get free Alice in Wonderland content by visiting a store. The content includes 13 screen savers and an ebook copy of Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. Offer expires April 7. Via

Here's a report on the coming 3D movie pile-up and the aggressive tactics that the film studios are using to get theaters to choose their movies over others. It seems that the number of 3D screens in the country isn't sufficient. In particular, coming the Friday the 26th of March is DreamWorks Animation's How to Train Your Dragon and then a week later, Warner Bros. Clash of the Titans. Both of these films will be competing with Alice in Wonderland for limited screen space.

The site Deadline Hollywood reported that Tim Burton would be directing a stop-motion version of the Addams Family. Then MTV reported that Burton won't be. Nobody seems to have got the memo, and a Google search on "Tim Burton Stop Motion Addams Family" reveals page after page of sites repeating the same story.

Previously: Tim Burton's Next Film Projects

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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Wait! There's More Alice

You probably thought that now the movie is out, that's it, huh? WRONG!

I can't believe that I'm linking to a USA Today article, but it's on Tim Burton's art show at the MoMA.

A Brazilian website has an interview with yours truly - in Portuguese.

The weekend's box office results? Alice in Wonderland 2010 RULES!

The Disney Family site has some cool Alice in Wonderland crafts, including a Cheshire Cat picture frame, shrink charms, and a cool shadow box, among other things. There's more! Via

Previously: Alice in Wonderland Crafts and Recipes

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Friday, March 12, 2010

Camille Rose Garcia Signing at Powell's Books

I was one of the many people who showed up last night to the book signing for Camille Rose Garcia's Alice in Wonderland at Powell's Books here in Portland Oregon. The wait was very long because there was a huge line. I got to talk to Garcia very briefly. She told me that she was really excited to have had the chance to illustrate Alice in Wonderland. She also mentioned that she had been disappointed to hear that the Mock Turtle wasn't in the Tim Burton film. We talked a bit about how there was a lot of crying in Lewis Carroll's book. I gushed about how much I loved her illustrations for this book (it's all true!) Here's a link to my review of Camille Rose Garcia's Alice in Wonderland.

As a bonus, there are a bunch of her paintings up right now, so if you're in the Portland area you might want to make a trip to the 3rd floor of Powell's on Burnside to see them. They're much more much in person. Also! If you live in Seattle, there is a book signing there tomorrow at 2:00 PM, March 13th, 2010 at: Roq La Rue Gallery.

Camille Rose Garcia's Website
Buy Alice in Wonderland at Amazon

Previously: Wonderland as Found in NYC

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And Your Little Dog Too

Thanks to the box office success of Alice in Wonderland 2010, three different studios are making plans to roll out four (four!) different versions of The Wizard of Oz. The one I would be interested in seeing is Wicked. Here is more info. I'll bet you a hundred bucks the Disney version, if it happens, will be in 3D.

From the same site, here is the worst interview ever with Crispin Glover. What were they thinking when they hit the Publish button?

I'm not going to link to any of them, but everybody predicts that Alice in Wonderland will still be top box office for this weekend. Apparently, the top contender is the new Matt Damon/Paul Greengrass flick, Green Zone, which has been described as "Bourne Identity meets The Hurt Locker."

Finally, the Disney Store is having a deal where you can get two tickets free when you make a purchase over $100 in the Alice in Wonderland Boutique and apply the Promo Code: TEAPARTY

Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland

Previously: Animation and Fashion in Wonderland

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Thursday, March 11, 2010

Alice in Wonderland Un-Anniversary Special Edition

On March 30 Disney will be releasing 2-disk "Special Un-Anniversary Edition" of it's 1951 animated version of Alice in Wonderland, which is the version that most people probably picture when someone mentions Alice in Wonderland as a movie. The DVD set will include new features, including an unreleased song, a deleted scene (Pig and Pepper), some featurettes, and a documentary. Especially interesting will be a featurette on the making of Alice in Wonderland. Of course, this release will also be remastered and restored. Get it here.

Previously: Pogo Remix of Alice

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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Giveaway: Cheshire Cat Bobblehead and Alice Plush

Good news! I have a bunch of Alice in Wonderland bobbleheads and plushes which I will be giving away courtesy of FunKo. These are really cool. Here is the second batch. Like the last one I'm asking everybody to do a little something. This time to enter, write about a memory you have about Alice in Wonderland - either about one of the movies or a book. I have this memory of seeing the 1951 Disney movie and thinking that the talking flowers were really cool. I also remember the Tea Party where the Hatter and March Hare yell "No Room! No Room!"

What is up for grabs: A Funko Cheshire Cat Bobblehead and Alice Plush.

Who will win: One winner will be selected. To enter, write about a memory you have about Alice in Wonderland - either about one of the movies or a book. If you are logged in to Google make sure your email is visible in your profile. Otherwise make sure that you leave an email address. (I've been trying to find a way around this and can't. If anybody knows of a way to add an email field to the Blogger comment form, please let me know!) Entrants must live in the US or Canada (my apologies to everybody else).

When and how the winner will be chosen: The giveaway ends two weeks away at midnight, on Tuesday, March 23. The winner will be selected randomly using a random number generated by

Notification: Winner will be notified by email.

Previously: Funko Mad Hatter Bobblehead and White Rabbit Plushie

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Interview with Matt Lucas and UK Box Office

The newest Disney Movie Previews episode, number 39, has lots of footage from the Alice in Wonderland World Premier in the UK.

Here is an interview with Matt Lucas, the British comedian who played Tweedledee and Tweedledum in Alice in Wonderland 2010.

Speaking of the UK and Alice 2010, the movie has broken box office records for 3D movies in the UK and Ireland.

Previously: Alice is the New Black plus Interview with Matt Lucas

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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Tim Burton's Next Projects

IMDB lists three projects "in development" for Tim Burton. These are:
1. Maleficent (2013)
2. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (2011)
3. Dark Shadows (2011)

This site started the Maleficent rumors. Maleficent is the name of the evil fairy godmother who casts a spell on Sleeping Beauty in the 1959 Disney movie of the same name. Apparently, Burton will be doing a version of Sleeping Beauty from Maleficent's viewpoint.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is news to me. It sounds pretty self-explanatory, though, doesn't it? It is based on a recently released book by Seth Grahame-Smith, who is the author of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Here's a blurb on it.

Dark Shadows is something I've been looking forward to since I heard about it. This is a movie adaptation of an old supernatural-themed soap opera of the same name. Johnny Depp will play a vampire named Barnabas Collins, who was one of the main characters on the show.

Previously: Concept Art for Alice 2010 with Drawings by Tim Burton

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Monday, March 8, 2010

Games, Ticket Giveaway plus Alice Breaks Box Office Records

Now that Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland 2010 is out, the next battlefield is video games. As we've noted before, Disney Interactive has created Alice in Wonderland games for the Wii, DS, and PC (get them here). Here is an interview with Tim Burton about the Alice games and his level of involvement with them.

Readers in the San Francisco Bay area will be interested in this giveaway for Alice in Wonderland tickets plus some kind of points they call "$Karma" points (if you know what these are please let us know in the comments!).

Over the weekend Alice in Wonderland 2010 brought in over $116 US. Here's an article that discusses these numbers as compared to previous films by Burton and Depp. ABC Family has acquired rights to the movie, which it looks like makes it so they will be the first to show it in 2012. That's a long wait!

Previously: Trailers for the Alice in Wonderland Video Games

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Saturday, March 6, 2010

Free Shipping on Disney Store Orders this Weekend

I just noticed this right now, so sorry for the late notice, but the Disney store has a deal this weekend only where you get Free Shipping on your entire shipment with any purchase from the Alice In Wonderland Boutique at with Code: Wonderland

The last time I visited the Wonderland Boutique there wasn't much there, so I took another look today. Here are some things I liked. I managed to get big versions of these so you can see enlarged versions by clicking the images.

Create-Your-Own Alice in Wonderland Small Watch for Adults
- I like rectangular watches, and I'm really into the Cheshire Cat from the movie, so this looks like a cool watch. These can be personalized quite a bit. You choose the style of watch, what image goes on the face, what wrist strap you want, and then you can also get your name printed on the face and something engraved on the back.

Keyhole Alice in Wonderland Bangle Bracelet by Tom Binns for Disney Couture
- I'm a sucker for blue and think that this bangle looks cool. It's just got a certain feel to it.

Cheshire Cat Alice in Wonderland Tee for Women
- See a pattern yet? I'm all about the Cheshire cat, I admit it. I also like a more "normal" tee shirt, although they have a lot of T-shirt options.

Cheshire Cat Alice in Wonderland Necklace by Swarovski
- Sadly, my favorite thing in the store isn't available for purchase yet. This thing is SO COOL. This necklace has a charm at the end of the extender: a Cheshire Cat tail. It's kind of like a scary mask. If you all were planning on buying me a birthday present, here's an idea for you.

Previously: Alice Merchandise at Hot Topic

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Friday, March 5, 2010

My Review of Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland 2010

I just got back from seeing the movie and I thought it was really good. To be honest, since I've been anticipating seeing it, and really looking forward to it, and being very excited about it, I was worried that it wouldn't meet my expectations. Luckily I thought it was really good. I will say, however, that it is an adventure movie. Ready for adventure?

Everybody should know the story by now: Alice Kingsley is expected to marry an overbearing young man that she isn't really into, and when he proposes to her, she excuses herself and takes a side trip down the rabbit hole. But in doing so, Alice jumps out of the proverbial frying pan and into the fire. Once in Underland (Wonderland) again, she is pulled into an adventure where she is expected to do other things she'd really rather not do by some characters that she can barely understand. Like the books, everything works by its own logic (or illogic, as the case may be) and Alice plays the part of the "straight man" by being serious and sensible in the face of madness.

The movie has its weak points. For example, I felt let down by the Tea Party. I was expecting something more like the book or the Tea Party in the 1952 Disney adaptation. Both are silly and maddening. While Burton pays homage to the 1952 Disney version by having the March Hare pour some tea "into" a tea cup with a broken bottom and some other nonsense like that, the Tea Party in this movie is squandered to provide some background information about current events in Underland. Both my guest and I felt let down by the Futterwacking, especially after so much had been made of it. I don't know about anybody else, but I also felt like the movie was "rushed" and could have used some more attention or time in some scenes. *Whew* OK that was a lot - let's look at the good things.

Things I really loved: The Cheshire Cat is amazingly cool, has mysterious dialogue, is an intriguing character, and is awesomely animated. The Bandersnatch is horrifying, sad, and (surprise) complex. Helena Bonham Carter is a hoot as the Red Queen, and Anne Hathaway totally hams up the prim fairy queenliness of the White Queen. Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter is by turns tender, mad, sad, haunted, and crazy. There are also: talking animals, laboring monkeys, a horrifying moat crossing, a menacing performance by Crispin Glover, some white-knuckle bravery, some men acting like pigs, some emotional depth, and some arguments that end only when one of the parties involved manages to makes absolutely no sense. The architecture of the palaces is amazing. Alice rides several creatures in the movie and each time it is exhilarating.
On a basic level, I think Tim Burton's movie is about a girl searching for her identity. Alice's identity is questioned at the very beginning by the Dormouse and other characters. At first Alice claims to be "The Alice" but then chickens out. When consulted about her identity, the Caterpillar says that she is "Not Yet Alice." Later in the movie, Alice deceives the Red Queen by claiming to be someone named "Um." All along, Alice is either too big or too small. It is as if she needs to get "right-sized." As the story unfolds, Alice finds herself walking the line between what she thinks is right and what everyone else in the story expects of her. I don't know how anyone else feels about it, but I liked this extra level of meaning, and I also liked the extremes that Alice has to traverse to find her own answers.

As a bonus, Alice also gets to wear a bunch of beautiful and amazing dresses and outfits. Much kudos to costume designer Colleen Atwood for these and the other costumes in the film. Last, as everyone seems to agree, the 3D and animation is really amazing and Underland is dazzlingly cool and dark. If you're going to see Alice in Wonderland with the expectation that it will be everything you would expect a masterpiece based on Lewis Carroll's timeless books to be, you might come out disappointed. BUT if you're looking for a fun adventure about a girl who is trying to find herself, then you're in for a fun ride.

What did you think? Leave a comment here or send in a review to I'll publish any reviews received on a special review page. If you have a blog and review the movie, drop me a line and I'll link to your review.

Previously: Review of The Mystery of Lewis Carroll by Jenny Woolf

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Get Tickets! And Veritable Giveaway Explosion

Today is the day!!!! I have my tickets. Click here to get yours.

Now that you've done that, there are Alice in Wonderland 2010 giveaways to be entered, I mean if you want to. I entered the Fandango one.

Stitch Kingdom has a "Prize Pack" giveaway.

Fandango has a card giveaway which ends up being the equivalent of $100 in movie tickets (wow!). This is to promote their Limited Edition Alice in Wonderland Fandango Bucks gift cards.

Lenny's Alice in Wonderland site is hosting a giveaway of The Portuguese Adventure into Wonderland by Jane Duarte. Enter here.

Previously: Cool White Rabbit Alice Art Doll

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New Disney Alice Products on Zazzle

I just found out that Disney has a store on Zazzle. They have a bunch of different designs available that you can get on different kinds of shirts, sweaters, hoodies, mugs, and things like that. Above are pictures of a Cheshire Cat T-shirt, a Drink Me mug, and a Cheshire Cat shirt using the 1952 Disney Cheshire. They also have a Red Queen design that I think is cool.

Previously: Alice in Wonderland Bobble Heads

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Alice Department Store Windows in the US and France

French store Printemps let some designers go wild designing dresses for an Alice in Wonderland themed display.

Over here in the US, Bloomingdale's has unveiled its Alice in Wonderland windows. See more here on Racked. Via

Having looked at both, I have to say that Printemps has Bloomingdales beat hands down. Incidentally, Wicked Halo has more Alice in Wonderland related stuff here, here, and here.


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White Rabbit Papercraft, Alice Art Show, and Movie Costume Design

Artist Matt Hawkins has made the template for this white rabbit papercraft available for download, here: White Rabbit Papercraft. Via

This papercraft was created for another Alice in Wonderland art show, which starts today at the Canteen Art Shop.

An interesting article about Colleen Atwood and her work as the costume designer for Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland.

Previously: Interview with Colleen Atwood

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Thursday, March 4, 2010

Wonderland as Found in New York City

I'm not sure if this is today's "Wonderland Wednesday", but it came from the usual source. I'm confused! That's OK though.

From today's inbox, a kid-centric tour of New York City:

Time Out Kids is proud to present the Alice in Wonderland Tour of NYC! From monumental character-themed statues to murals underground, we picked the ideal spots for the young and the curious. We show you where kids can browse kooky drawings (while you do some browsing of your own) and take part in their own scene from the story, courtesy of Central Park.

For more Alice in Wonderland-themed fun, check out our guide here:

Finally, from the Hollywood Reporter, some speculation about how Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland is expected to do in the box office.

Previously: Furniture Down the Rabbit Hole

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Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Alice Does Algebra and then Gets Her Feet Tattooed in Wonderland

Check out this enormous gallery of Alice in Wonderland tattoos. (Am I the only one who thinks that this looks like it was painful to get?)

New Scientist has an article online about the clever math and logic that is packed into Alice in Wonderland.

Cool photos by Lorenzo Agius, starring Liz Jagger as... You guessed it!

Previously: Photos of Anne Hathaway in GQ and Helena Bonham Carter on Guardian UK

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Mia Wasikowska, Helena Bonham Carter and Anne Hathaway

A few weeks ago I mentioned that you could go and submit questions to be answered by the leading ladies of Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland. Above is the resulting interview. If you click on the above to go to YouTube, you will find that there are more. Via

Go here for 10 different Alice in Wonderland themed songs by 10 different bands. Everything from Jefferson Airplane to Marilyn Manson.

Previously: Avril Lavigne Single from Almost Alice

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Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Huge Tenniel Stickers and Almost Alice with Bonus Tracks

The TDN Shop/Studio in Curitiba, Brazil has these cool adhesive Alice in Wonderland wall decorations based on the artwork of John Tenniel. The page is in Portuguese. Here it is Google Translated into English.

Starting today, Hot Topic is selling an exclusive edition of the Almost Alice Soundtrack to Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland. This edition comes with three bonus tracks, "Sea What We Seas" by Never Shout Never, "Topsy Turvy" by Family Force 5 and "Extreme" by Valora!

Click here to purchase:
Various Artists - Almost Alice CD

Previously: Tokio Hotel and Kerli's Single, Strange

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Alice News from Around the Planet


A piece by Marmite Sue for the Gallery Nucleus show "Curiouser and Curiouser". (I purchased one of the pieces of art from this show, but it's top secret which one.) You can see pictures of the art, here. Via

Here is a positive review of the Disney Alice in Wonderland games coming out this month.

Dutch theater chains which had declared a boycott on Alice in Wonderland over the DVD release schedule have also reached an agreement with Disney. I think that's it for the all the theaters that had threatened a boycott. Just in time!

Previously: Beautiful Alice in Wonderland Art

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Soundtrack Giveaway on Stitch Kingdom


Sorry for the late notice. The last day to enter is March 2! Website Stitch Kingdom has a giveaway for 10 sets of both Alice in Wonderland soundtracks.

Previously: Preview the Almost Alice Songs

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Monday, March 1, 2010

Reviews of Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland Begin to Appear

Now that the review embargo has been lifted, reviews of Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland are appearing. At this time, the film is enjoying a score of 78% on Rotten Tomatoes. To put this score into perspective, Martin Scorsese's new film Shutter Island is currently at 67%, and James Cameron's Avatar is at 82%. This is only based on 9 reviews, so I'm sure the number has got some moving around to do, but I feel that's positive.

In other good news, Odeon Cinemas in the UK have reached an agreement with Disney over the disputed DVD release time.

The fashion blog, Go Fug Yourself, wants to know what you think about what Helena Bonham Carter wore to the British World Premiere. Go tell them!

Then come back and watch the 1903 version of Alice in Wonderland.

Previously: Alice in Wonderland Corsets and Dresses

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The Mystery of Lewis Carroll by Jenny Woolf

Thanks to St. Martin's Press for sending me a copy of this book to read and review. I have to admit that beyond knowing that Lewis Carroll was a mathematician of some sort whose name was really Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, I knew very little about the man until I read it. Dodgson was born January 27, 1832 and died January 14, 1898.

Woolf's biography does a great job of filling in the general details of Carroll's life and the period he lived in, and then spends time delving more deeply into some of the more interesting and mysterious facets of his life. Because Carroll left journals, a great deal is known about some parts of his life. Unfortunately, some of his journals were either lost or destroyed, so there are some large holes missing from his history. Also, the journals we have seem to have been written in a way that largely left out his most personal thoughts and feelings. So many things that we wonder about Carroll can only be answered with vague and incomplete information. Luckily there are some things about which we have good information.

In this book, Jenny Woolf covers such topics as: Carroll's childhood and family life, his life and employment as a Don at Oxford, his interest in the human body, love and sex, storytelling, children, religion, the supernatural, and his hobby as a photographer. There is also a chapter on Alice Liddel which clarifies his relationship with her, and a chapter which discusses Carroll's finances. Woolf uncovered a completely new wealth of information about Lewis Carroll by tracking down his bank records.

The book is written very bravely. Instead of glossing over aspects of his personality which may not be that flattering to Carroll, Woolf presents what we know about him and points out how the information fits in its historical context. The result makes the reader feel like they get to know Carroll better, warts and all.

Carroll came from a large family and was the eldest male child. He became a deacon at Christ Church, Oxford, but never advanced to priesthood. The reasons behind this are many, but mostly it seemed to be a mutually beneficial arrangement. He was very creative and children (and some adults) found him to be very entertaining. As the eldest male in his family, he took over the family finances when his father died, and was responsible for making sure his siblings were taken care of. Later in life Carroll was thought by many to be difficult and overly pious, and yet some got to know his deeply creative, imaginative and playful side.

One topic about Carroll's life that has received a lot of attention and speculation has been his sexuality and whether or not he liked little girls a bit too much. This is the same sort of speculation that another famous author, J.M. Barrie, the man who wrote Peter Pan, has been subjected to. Woolf does a good job of shining a sensible light on the subject, encourages readers to view the facts in their proper context, and dispels some myths. Something that would seem rather alarming to us now wouldn't seem so strange in the culture of Victorian England at the time Carroll lived.

In light of all this, I find it fascinating that Lewis Carroll had some maybe too-friendly relationships with grown women, which were considered inappropriate during his time, and that there was some scandal during his time.

Another topic in this biography that I found very interesting was a discussion of how central Alice Liddell was to the writing of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. It seems like although Carroll was certainly fond of Liddell, he was also fond of many other children, and maybe history has made a little too much of it. For example, the character in the book, who had long, light hair, doesn't really match what Liddell looked like.

I don't want to reveal any spoilers, so I can't say much about the final chapter in the book, in which Woolf examines his financial records, but I will say that it is very interesting.

Anyone who is interested in learning more about Carroll will find The Mystery of Lewis Carroll a fascinating read. A person can only wonder what would have become of this amazing man if he had lived in a different time under different circumstances. Jenny Woolf has done a great job of presenting the information in an organized format, and her writing is clear and a delight to read. I would recommend this biography to anyone who would like to know more about Lewis Carroll.

Get The Mystery of Lewis Carroll by Jenny Woolf on Amazon.

Previously: New Book on Lewis Carroll

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