DVD Exclusive: Behind the Grotesque Green Screen of Burton’s Alice

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Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland is a trippy, manic joint. In such a good way.

When I first reviewed it back in 3D, I was so relieved that Tim Burton had found his way back to having some fun in his wonderlands. There’s a sense of whimsy and joy here that feels just like an early Burton experiment.

But more than any 3D movie I’ve seen thus far, this is the movie I’ve been waiting to see again via high-def DVD. The colors are so lush, the characters so charming, that I’ve wanted to see the thing again without the cumbersome 3D glasses darkening the image. (More at Techland: LOST explained with Post-Its)

The good news is that both the Alice in Wonderland DVD and Blu-ray hit stores Tuesday. Even better news: The lovely people at Disney have given us access to an exclusive special feature from the DVD – a rather remarkable behind-the-scenes glimpse of how Tweedledee and Tweedledum came to life via live action, computer animation, and some seriously fat green jumpsuits.

Watching this, the whole thing seems like a lot of work. But there’s definitely an air of authenticity to these two screw-ups in the movie that can be tied back to the fact that these scenes were indeed acted out in real-time.

Other filmmakers may have been tempted just to animate the whole sequence, and then layer in the voices later. But the hilarious voice work, awkward movements and jagged pacing of the scenes feel far more natural thanks to Matt Lucas’ intricate work on the soundstage.

And more natural means, of course, more engaging and entertaining. The opposite of Jar Jar.

Check out my original Alice review here, and check out all the DVD info here.

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