Alice In Pound Land – Burton On A Budget
Alright, alright, we get it, Burton‘s Alice In Wonderland is so frikking exciting that we’re basically all just sat weeing ourselves around the clock in preparation. As we speak, cinema seats world-wide are being fitted with handy-wipe funnels and rehydration units just to ensure that society doesn’t go feral. It’s terrifying, it’s wonderful, it’s moist. That’s Hollywood for you.
But we can’t help but think that with the all-star team and special effects budget that Burton had to play with, he could have been replaced with a fire-safety video and the end result would still have been an epic block-buster (and possibly a lot safer, fire-wise.) So we put this to Team Alice, sure you can do it, but could you have done it without your massively huge amounts of stonking huge massive cash? (Yeah there’s two ‘massives’ in there, but you know what, they could afford to pay for words twice.) We think not.
Luckily, here at Best For Film, we’ve devised a way in which the exact same film can be made, on a fraction of the budget. And you know what that means? Hell yes. A lot more money for those executive piss-seats we were talking about. The high life my friend. Take a look at our casting, and see if you can spot the difference. In some cases, we reckon the improvement is astonishing.
Mia Wasikowska/Kerry Katona
Picture the scene- a deserted supermarket aisle. A young girl, on an innocent search for a party-pack of prawns, digs deep within an abandoned freezer. Suddenly- in she falls! A glorious descent into Wonder Iceland- a world where every night is budget-pie night, where your friends are singing D-list celebrities with mini-quiches in their hands and darkness in their eyes. It’s the party that never ends! Ever. Dance for us. Dance, you shiny gathering of the damned. You wanted a dark fairytale. It doesn’t get much darker than that.
The Mad Hatter
Johnny Depp/Roy Chubby Brown
Now let’s be honest here. Sure Johnny Depp is good at all that so called “acting”, but how is he at being horrifyingly racist, sexist and unexpectedly violent? Exactly. Ever tried to hold a pint when you’ve got scissors for hands, Johnny? We thought not. Too busy with your “actor’s intentions” and your “cheekbone-enhancing exercises”. Chubby Brown would put the ‘mad’ back into the ‘mad hatter’, as well as the ‘brilliantly offensive’ back into ‘tea party’.
The Red Queen
Helena Bonham Carter/Dot Cotton
Now here is an example of how expensive CGI is often completely unneccesary. Which face has been electronically mutated? We’re not even sure they know. Sure, Dot might not be much of a super-villain, and she’ll get you your shirts back as clean as a whistle, but would you want to live in a world where the Cotton stares up at you from every pound note? No. No you wouldn’t. Helena can be really really married to Tim Burton all she likes, but at the end of the day, Dot would bring her years (and years, and years and years and years) of being a mad old trout to the role. And there’s no substitute for experience.
Tweedledee and Tweedledum
Matt Lucas and Matt Lucas/Ross Kemp and Shaun Williamson
Yet again, think of the millions in CGI that could have been saved if only Hollywood had known what we know. Sure, there are a couple of minute differences between Ross and Shaun, but you know what you do? Keep em moving! It’s an entirely new character trait! Tweedledee and Tweedledum, two boys who bop the days and nights away, a continuous jostling motion, meaning you never quite get a proper look at their ever-blurred physique. Forget 3D, this technique will bring the world of film-making to its knees. Keep leaping Shaun. Keep that beat going.
The White Rabbit
Michael Sheen And Some Computers Somewhere/Sweep
Sometimes – and this is a lesson that Tim Burton, bless him, has yet to learn – less is more. Yes, sure, you could communicate the horrors of a panicked society by having the voice of Michael Sheen yabbering at you, holding a massive clock and parroting “I’m late! I’m late!”, or you could have the baleful, eternity-filled silent stare of Sweep. Looking into your very soul. Reminding you of all you’ve never done, and all you will never do. Sweep – I think we’ll all agree – is due an Oscar. This could be his time.
The Cheshire Cat
Stephen Fry And Some CGI Bullshit/Bagpuss
You know why? Because in the world that we have created; where young Kerry is chased by massive packets of half-price figs, where the mad-hatter unexpectedly shits on the doormouse and tries to have sex with the March Hare, where the Queen chain-smokes her kingdom into a sudsy Daz-based oblivion, twins won’t stop dancing and the only silence to be found is in the horrifying stare of the rabbit/dog that is supposed to guide you, you need a bit of calm. Bagpuss. Your gravelly tones will save us all.