Alice in Wonderland

Alice in Wonderland

5.0 3
Director: Norman Z. McLeod

Cast: Charlotte Henry, Richard Arlen, Roscoe Ates

     
 

This star-laden version of Lewis Carroll's novel combines elements of both the title novel and Carroll's sequel, Through the Looking Glass. In England of the 19th century, young Alice finds that the mirror over the library fireplace opens into a strange world. She has odd adventures and changes size several times both before and after she follows aSee more details below

Overview

This star-laden version of Lewis Carroll's novel combines elements of both the title novel and Carroll's sequel, Through the Looking Glass. In England of the 19th century, young Alice finds that the mirror over the library fireplace opens into a strange world. She has odd adventures and changes size several times both before and after she follows a time-obsessed White Rabbit (Skeets Gallagher). Soaked after nearly drowning in a pool of tears, Alice is helped to dry off by a Dodo (Polly Moran), and encounters a caterpillar (Ned Sparks), whose mushroom also changes Alice's size. In a noisy home where the Cook (Lillian Harmer) and the Duchess (Alison Skipworth) are always fighting, Alice takes care of the Duchess' baby, but it turns into a pig and runs away. Asking directions of the Cheshire Cat (Richard Arlen) is no help, and a tea party with the Mad Hatter (Edward Everett Horton), the March Hare (Charlie Ruggles) and the Dormouse (Jackie Searl) is confusing and annoying. Alice meets the Queen of Hearts (May Robson), and encounters the Duchess again; while strolling with her, Alice meets the Gryphon (William Austin) and the Mock Turtle (Cary Grant). The twins Tweedledum (Jack Oakie) and Tweedledee (Roscoe Karns) recite a poem about a Walrus and a Carpenter (seen as an animated cartoon), but when they decide to go to battle, they're chased off by a crow. Humpty Dumpty (W.C. Fields) relates the poem Jabberwocky to Alice, then falls off a wall and breaks. The mournful White Knight (Gary Cooper), unable to put Humpty Dumpty together again, escorts Alice for a while, but she tumbles down a hill and finds she's become a queen. At a party in Alice's honor, the Red Queen (Edna Mae Oliver) becomes furious at Alice, who then wakes up to find herself in the library, with her kitten Dinah in her lap.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Lewis Carroll's "Alice" stories have never made a totally satisfactory transition to the cinema, perhaps because a great deal of their strength lies in wordplay and mathematical underpinnings that are simply more at home on the page than on the screen. This version of Alice in Wonderland is fairly faithful to the letter of Carroll's work, but it neither captures the original's spirit nor comes up with a unique spirit of its own. The screenplay is also decidedly choppy, which is one of the dangers in filming a story as episodic as this, and it feels as if there were too many hands working on it. That said, the physical production itself is a marvel, especially for its time, with lavish sets, effects', and costumes (and a delightful animated sequence by Hugh Harman and Rudolf Ising). The all-star cast is somewhat wasted, as the elaborate costumes make most of the actors unrecognizable, and the parts do not necessarily call for star performers, but it still is fun to pick out the big (and not so big) names. Charlotte Henry is a very fine Alice, capturing both her precocity and her petulance and helping to anchor the film. Of the stars, best are W.C. Fields, who seems quite at home with the absurdity of his dialogue, and Gary Cooper, cast against dashing type as a senile knight. Even though Alice is uneven, there are a number of segments -- the drowning in tears, the surrealistic climax, etc. -- that work quite well.

Product Details

Release Date:
03/02/2010
UPC:
0025195053563
Original Release:
1933
Rating:
NR
Source:
Universal Studios
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[B&W, Full Frame]
Time:
1:00:00
Sales rank:
8,347

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Charlotte Henry Alice
Richard Arlen Cheshire Cat
Roscoe Ates Fish
William Austin Gryphon
Billy Barty White Pawn and the Baby
Billy Bevan Two of Spades
Colin Campbell Garden Frog
Harvey Clark Fr. William
Gary Cooper White Knight
Jack Duffy Leg of Mutton
Leon Errol Uncle Gilbert
Louise Fazenda White Queen
W.C. Fields Humpty Dumpty
Alec B. Francis King of Hearts
Cary Grant Mock Turtle
Raymond Hatton Mouse
Lucien Littlefield Father William's Son
Mae Marsh Sheep
Polly Moran Dodo Bird
Jack Oakie Tweedledum
Edna May Oliver Red Queen
May Robson Queen of Hearts
Charlie Ruggles March Hare
Jackie Searl Dormouse
Alison Skipworth Duchess
Ned Sparks The Caterpillar
Ford Sterling The White King
Harry Ekezian First Executioner
Leslie King Actor
Richard "Skeets" Gallagher White Rabbit
Lillian Harmer Cook
Sterling Holloway Frog
Edward Everett Horton Mad Hatter
Roscoe Karns Tweedledee
Baby Le Roy Joker
George Ovey Plum Pudding
Meyer Grace Third Executioner
Ethel Griffies Governess
Colin Kenny The Clock
Charles McNaughton Five of Spades
Patsy O'Byrne The Aunt
Will Stanton Seven of Spades
Joe Torilla Second Executioner
Julie Bishop Alice's Sister

Technical Credits
Norman Z. McLeod Director
Farciot Edouart Special Effects
Bert Glennon Cinematographer
Edward Hoagland Editor
Ellsworth Hoagland Editor
Gordon Jennings Special Effects
Newt Jones Costumes/Costume Designer
Louis D. Lighton Producer
Joseph L. Mankiewicz Screenwriter
William Cameron Menzies Art Director,Screenwriter
Robert Odell Art Director,Set Decoration/Design
Henry Sharp Cinematographer
Dimitri Tiomkin Score Composer
Wally Westmore Costumes/Costume Designer

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Alice in Wonderland
1. Main Titles [3:44]
2. A Boring Afternoon [5:09]
3. A Looking-Glass Room [5:30]
4. Follow the Rabbit [3:30]
5. Swimming with a Mouse [4:05]
6. Dodo Bird's Recital [1:24]
7. Caterpillar's Advice [2:40]
8. Meet the Duchess [4:17]
9. Questioning Chesire Cat [:02]
10. Mad Hatter's Tea Party [1:48]
11. The Queen of Hearts [4:10]
12. The Gryphon & Mock Turtle [4:23]
13. Tweedledee & Tweedledum [4:22]
14. Humpty Dumpty [8:56]
15. White Knight's Escort [8:02]
16. Queen Alice [6:20]
17. Table Manners [2:50]
18. End Titles [4:01]

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