It's 1953 and our story takes place in Russia - then known as the Soviet Union - a nation terrorised by their communist leader Joseph Stalin (Adrian McLoughlin). But this is not a story about the inhumane acts of oppression and cruelty in his regime that resulted in the death of millions, it's about the events that occurred both immediately prior and following his shocking death from an apparent stroke at the age of 74.
Of course, this movie is as loosely based on the real events as it possibly could be - but it's certainly how we'd want to imagine events transpiring. There becomes an intense power struggle between several members of the Council of Ministers including Nikita Khrushchev (Steve Buscemi) - who would later go on to be the First Secretary of the Communist Party - Georgy Malenkov (Jeffrey Tambor), Lavrentiy Beria (Simon Russell Beale), Vyacheslav Molotov (Michael Palin), Lazar Kaganovich (Dermot Crowley), Anastas Mikoyan (Paul Whitehouse) and Nicolai Bulganin (Paul Chahidi).
Meanwhile, Marshal Georgy Zhukov (Jason Isaacs) is throwing a spanner in the works - not being the best of friends with Malenkov - and of course Joseph Stalin's renegade son Vasily (Rupert Friend) needs to be kept a close eye on. But nothing compares the chaos that they face from the public when they find out that their 'great' leader is dead.
Continue: The Death Of Stalin Trailer
As Alice is once again taken into the magical and mysterious world that she's somehow connected to, Alice finds herself with her friends on the other side of the looking glass. Through Alice doesn't really know why, she's attached to the peculiar world and its inhabitants but her latest visit will put the young girl in grave danger.
The Red Queen has gained a dangerous new ally who is out to find the young blonde haired girl. As the clock ticks and tocks, the game of kings becomes a whole new reality and Alice must find a way to beat her opponents.
Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass is based on the characters from Lewis Carroll's novel and is produced by Tim Burton. The Muppets director James Bobin directs the feature film.
Alice once again returns to Wonderland and meets a lot of familiar faces. This time her biggest enemy is Time, quite literally. As the Blue Caterpillar reminds her, 'You've been gone too long, Alice there are matters that might benefit from your attention. Friends cannot be neglected.' Instead of falling down a rabbit hole, this time Alice gains entry to wonderland through a large mirror which takes her to a topsy-turvy universe which could only be associated with Wonderland. There appear to be a few differences between the book and the new film; whilst Lewis Carol's original version of the book was based six months after the original tale, the inclusion of Time might mean that Linda Woolverton's version make time travel much quicker in Wonderland. Again, Carol used many chess analogies in the book, at the moment its unknown how much this will play a part in the movie. The majority of the lead cast from Tim Burton's 2010 version of Alice in Wonderland including Johnny Depp as Mad Hatter, Helena Bonham Carter as the Red Queen and Anne Hathaway as the White Queen. Alice Through The Looking Glass was directed by James Bobbin who previously worked on the 2011 Muppets film and Muppets Most Wanted.
Comparisons between Tim Burton's stop-motion endeavors The Nightmare Before Christmas (which he co-wrote) and Corpse Bride (which he co-directed) are inevitable and unfair. The former will always be the Neil Armstrong of this particular animation genre, the first feature-length example of its kind that injects a challenging medium with creativity and heart.
Bride, now the Buzz Aldrin of Burton's stop-motion movies, strains under the effort to duplicate Nightmare's success, but it simply lacks that new-car smell. While still inventive in parts, it's nowhere near as innovative. Burton and collaborator Mike Johnson are content to walk an established path where the superior Nightmare feverishly broke hallowed ground.
Continue reading: Corpse Bride Review
"Tim Burton's Corpse Bride" returns the director to his roots in the giddy macabre, and what an entertaining homecoming it is.
Using old-fashioned stop-motion animation (which Burton has improved upon since his first foray in "The Nightmare Before Christmas") to create atmospheric scenes populated by hoity Victorian caricatures and oddball creatures from a wonderfully weird underworld, the movie spins a fairytale fable of shy, awkward young Victor (voiced by Johnny Depp) whose arranged marriage to shy, pretty young Victoria (Emily Watson) is derailed when he accidentally gets hitched to a curvy, wide-eyed -- and decaying -- corpse (Helena Bonham Carter).
Although he's fallen in love with Victoria on first sight the night before they're to be wed, Victor is nervous about being thrust into 'til-death-do-us-part by his social-climbing nouveau riche parents and her family of snobbish but flat-broke aristocrats. Nervously practicing his vows in the creaking, snow-frosted forest on the outskirts of his gray industrial village (after fleeing the rehearsal ceremony), Victor slips Victoria's ring onto what looks like a naked branch sticking up from the frozen ground.
Continue reading: Corpse Bride Review