On the largest scale, it used a “recurring dreams” device to be, at once, a retelling of and a sequel to Lewis Carroll’s original; and it took the normally prepubescent Alice and reworked her as a young adult, completely rewiring the subtext.
It’s not a perfect film – it’s certainly not one of my favourite Burtons – but I did find it rather interesting and, by and large, entertaining.
And it seems that Disney were happy with it too – or at least the billion dollars of box office it drew in – as they’ve set Woolverton to work on a sequel.
Perhaps you’re not as surprised by this as I am.
This can’t be a straight-up adaptation of Carroll’s follow-on, Through the Looking Glass, as that was raided in part for the first picture and, well, we’re already working with a different Alice. I expect the new film may take plenty of Looking Glass‘ plot beats, maybe even its title, but it’s at the very least going to have to distort it in the same fashion as the first movie.
Or we may get an original story, meaning that more of the first film’s characters, and cast, will return.
Woolverton’s involvement was broken as a story by Variety. They are not reporting, however, if Tim Burton is in any way involved or not.