Alice in Wonderland
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
- Director's commentary track
- Behind-the-scenes stills gallery by world renowned photographer Terence Spencer
- Cecel Hepworth's 1903 film of Alice in Wonderland
- Essay by author and critic Wheeler Winston Dixon
- Music specially composed by Ravi Shankar
Top Customer Reviews
This is one of the wierdest versions of the story I have seen yet. It is somewhere between a dream and a nightmare. The story flows like a dream where scenes jump from one spot to another in a sort of almost episodic flow. This version is also a satire of the British aristocracy and culture.
This was made for the BBC as a Christmas special in 1966.
The soundtrack is by Ravi Shankar. The cast is composed of some of the best known names of British comedy and theatre. Among the cast Peter Cook plays the Mad Hatter, Peter Sellers is the King of Hearts, But the real scene stealer is Leo McKern as the Duchess(!).
All in all, this is a pretty dark version of the story. It is also one of the more "British".
The British release also has an 8 minute silent version from 1903, director's comentary, production stills and cast bios. The American release may have more or less of these things.
But what characters! Peter Sellers (who played in other Alice movies as well) is the King of Hearts, Peter Cook is the Mad Hatter, Leo McKern is the Duchess(!), and that's just the start of this star-driven production. Ravi Shankar composed the music and performs much of it, giving an other-worldly sense that fits Carroll's dreamscape perfectly. It's a kind of dream continually on the edge of nightmare without ever quite crossing the line, the same feeling you get when watching "The Prisoner" TV series.
But Alice truly makes the story. Ann-Marie Mallik, in what may be her only acting role, was the perfect choice. She moves through the dream with all the reserve you'd expect of a browbeaten Victorian child, but with all the presence and a little insolence of a woman-child entering her teens. Although she's more observer than participant in most scenes, she conveys a quiet sense of being fully engaged in it all.
This isn't a disneyfied, silly production for children. Nor is it a surreal exaggeration like Jan Svankmajer's (which I also enjoyed). It's a serious and baffling work. In that sense, it's more true to Dodgson's original work than any other Alice I've seen. This one has my highest recommendation.
So it should be no surprise that this low-budget (£32,000 and a 6-week shooting schedule) 72-minute BBC B&W production is done with all live actors, no animation, yet is faithful to the book. . Quoting from the enclosed folder, "...there was no script; Miller (the director) simply typed out the dialogue from Carroll's book each day and presented it to the cast on the set, and after a few rehearsals, they would do a take." Principal characters are portrayed in human form in Victorian period costume, making full utilization of the Tenniel illustrations where possible. For example, the white rabbit (Wilfred Brambell in an outstanding portrayal) is a fussily dressed, brisk-gaited English gentleman with pocket watch, top hat, braided uniform with tails, bow-tie, white gloves, and a white fan. Alice's dress and hair style is perfectly realized.
Some of the key scenes are shortened. For example, the pool of tears leading to the caucus race (to dry off) was created by a giant Alice crying in frustration, not shown, so the sudden appearance of water is confusing. The recitation of Father Williams to the Caterpillar (an excellent Michael Redgrave) was regrettably truncated to only a verse or so.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This version of Alice is often described as dark or surreal. I do not think that of it, but it was strange that they made no effort at all to dress up as the animal... Read morePublished 25 days ago by selkie
If you lived through or like the 60s, you will like the feel of this Alice. Cast includes Peter Sellers and Sir John Gieguld... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Beth R. Harris
I played the drums in it and i found jonathon miller to be not pnly a brilliant director but a wonderful human being too. Read morePublished 8 months ago by david page
The BBC idiots who produced this piece of low-budget surrealistic, absurdist rubbish were probably the same bunch responsible for destroying things of real value, say, most of the... Read morePublished 11 months ago by A. S. Templeton
While this 1966 production by Jonathon Miller remains as controversial as it was when first aired, it still remains the only film I have viewed that follows Carroll's book even... Read morePublished 11 months ago by John C. Priestley II
This is more in the spirit of the book than most. And my kids loved it. And we all loath the Tim Burton version.Published 14 months ago by Annie Smart