Tag Archive: Sacha Baron Cohen


Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland was a perfect film for Disney. Not in terms of quality – it was actually very forgettable – but in terms of money. Not only did it make over a billion dollars worldwide, but it also set the trend for creating live action versions of classic Disney tales. But that film premiered right after Avatar blew everyone away with its 3D and the marketing for Alice in Wonderland capitalized on the popularity of this viewing experience. Now arriving a long six years after its predecessor, Alice Through the Looking Glass can’t rely on its 3D gimmick to succeed. But instead of trying to recapture the magic of Wonderland that was missing the first time around, the creative minds behind this film have produced something even more bland and uninteresting. It’s completely mediocre in almost every regard and it’s guaranteed to be forgotten not long after leaving the theater.

It’s been years since Alice (Mia Wasikowska) has visited her friends in Wonderland. Out in the real world, she’s become the captain of a ship and has just returned home from a voyage around the world. Upon her arrival she discovers that her former fiancé Hamish (Leo Bill) now runs her father’s company and is forcing Alice to sell her ship in order to save her mother’s (Lindsay Duncan) house. But soon Alice is once again transported to the world of Wonderland, where she is reunited with many of her fantastic friends. The Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp) is the only friend who isn’t happy to see her. Having previously thought that his family was killed by the Jabberwocky, the Hatter now has reason to believe that they are actually alive. As the Hatter’s health deteriorates, Alice decides that she must go back in time to find out what happened to his family. But to do so, she must confront the sinister being of Time himself (Sacha Baron Cohen).

Director James Bobin has proven that he can be both clever and creative with the two latest Muppet movies, but here his creativity is completely stifled. There’s hardly anything to praise in the film, but there’s also not a lot to be critical of. It’s as if this was made by a machine that knows how to competently piece together a CGI-heavy movie, but has no rational thought into what would actually make a good film. The unique possibilities of Wonderland are endless, but Bobin doesn’t provide us with any interesting new set pieces or characters. Sure it’s fun to see Depp, Wasikowska and Helena Bonham Carter in these roles again, but that’s just not enough. Perhaps the screenplay by Linda Woolverton should have tried to be weird and different, instead of being predictably heartwarming. But ultimately, it’s the lack of imagination from everyone involved that makes the film so dull.

Alice Through the Looking Glass receives 2/4

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In the last two weeks, there have only been two major releases, but that is about to change as three films hope to knock The Avengers off the top of the box office. Battleship has the largest opening of the three films, opening at 3,690 locations. It’s action and special effects are likely to draw a fairly large crowd, but poor reviews will probably keep it from the number one spot this weekend. Also opening is the ensemble comedy What to Expect When You’re Expecting. Opening at 3,021 locations, the film is likely to attract a decent opening due to the familiarity of the title and the size of the cast. The other nationwide release this weekend is Sacha Baron Cohen’s The Dictator, which is opening at 3,008 locations. Opening in limited release is the Morgan Spurlock documentary Mansome, a new horror film entitled Lovely Molly, Hysteria, a new comedy about the invention of the vibrator, and Dustin Lance Black’s newest film Virginia. Industry analysts predict that The Avengers will still remain king of the box office, while Battleship comes in second, What to Expect When You’re Expecting comes in third, and The Dictator comes in fourth.

  • Battleship
  • What to Expect When You’re Expecting
  • The Dictator
  • Mansome (Limited)
  • Lovely Molly (Limited)
  • Hysteria (Limited)
  • Virginia (Limited)
  • Beyond the Black Rainbow (Limited)
  • Crooked Arrows (Limited)
  • The Samaritan (Limited)
  • Polisse (Limited)