A Mad Man’s View of Tim Burton’s Alice In Wonderland

I keep hearing my friends and critics say they were disappointed by the new Alice In Wonderland by Tim Burton. Including suggestions that “it had no plot,” was “nothing but eye candy,” and I can’t help but wonder were we watching the same movie? The Mad Hatter: “Have I gone mad?” Alice checks Hatter’s temperature Alice Kingsley: “I’m afraid so. You’re entirely bonkers. But I’ll tell you a secret. All the best people are.” I think a lot of people were hoping for a drug infused neon wonderland filled with drug-lore, and 90’s alternative subculture. Instead, Burton conceived a portrayal of madness, imagination, dreams, and self acceptance and discovery. I mean what represents someone battling their demons better than Alice literally battling a demon? Out of all of Burton’s films I found his interpretation of Alice In Wonderland to be his most daring, brilliant, and status quo challenging movie to date. With that said, I can easily see how it alienated a lot of his unoriginal pinstripe wearing studded belt core audience, but in doing so made his point that much sharper. Similar to Apple’s “Think Different” campaign it was a call to the few who truly haven’t lost touch with their dreams, childhood, and imagination. To understand Burton’s interoperation of Alice in Wonderland, as well as Johnny Depp’s portrayal of the Mad Hatter you have to look at Lewis Carroll the person (who’s real name was Charles Lutwidge Dodgson). To understand Lewis Carroll the person you have to take into consideration that he suffered from some form of epilepsy, possibly frontal lobe seizures, and at the very least was bipolar. He also suffered from a condition deemed...

I Was A Childhood Extra In the Movie “James and the Giant Peach”

When I was in 3rd grade my Mom had just finished reading the book with me, as I was a Roald Dahl fan. When I heard they were making a James and the Giant Peach movie and filming it in San Francisco I was thrilled. I was even more excited when my Mom took me to an audition to be in the movie itself. At first, I actually didn’t get the part. I knew another kid in my class who had auditioned as well and he had been called back as an extra. I was bummed. It was a big deal with the other kid getting to miss school to be in the movie, so I clearly remember when he got to leave. After just one day of filming a bunch of kids dropped out, and I got a surprise visit from my Mom about an hour after she dropped me off at school she came back and took me into the city. Next thing I knew I was on set. They sent me to wardrobe, gave me an impromptu 1940’s haircut, and put me in a maroon robe. We were in a series of old warehouses where they had built the set. They literally had created a giant peach sitting on top of truck in what was supposedly the streets of New York City. The set had that distinct Tim Burton feel to it, as he produced the movie. My Mom actually knew one of the assistants, and I was suddenly shoved right in front of the camera for several scenes at the end of the movie. It...