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Alice In Wondertown
Alice In Wondertown
Actors: Thais Valdés, Reynaldo Miravalles, Alberto Pujoles
Director: Daniel Dí­az Torres
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy
UR     2009     1hr 33min

{WINNER - FREEDOM PRIZE Berlin Film Festival 1991} — Inspired by Lewis Carroll's classic tale, Daniel Díaz Torres's Alice in Wondertown is a absurdist comedy and an allegory with a dark political undercurrent. Alice is a dr...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Thais Valdés, Reynaldo Miravalles, Alberto Pujoles
Director: Daniel Dí­az Torres
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy
Studio: First Run Features
Format: DVD - Color,Full Screen - Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 02/17/2009
Original Release Date: 01/01/1993
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/1993
Release Year: 2009
Run Time: 1hr 33min
Screens: Color,Full Screen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 4
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: Spanish
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

A Satire on Oppression and Indolence
Amos Lassen | Little Rock, Arkansas | 01/13/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

""Alice in Wondertown"

A Satire on Oppression and Indolence

Amos Lassen

It has been called "the most controversial film in the history of Cuba", "Alice in Wondertown" ("Alicia en el pueblo de Maravillas") is a film that looks at oppression and indolence in the Communist country. The film directed by Daniel Diaz Torres and starring Thais Valdes as Alice has been banned but it now brought to us by First Run Features. The film is a comedy of the absurd and a dark political allegory that is filled with wit.
The iconoclastic film is a takeoff of Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland". Our Alice is a drama teacher who undertakes a cultural mission to a small town where every strange things happen all of the time. The streets are filled with circus animals and mirrors turn into doors and everything and anything can happen. Alice soon discovers that the town populace is made up of former officials and workers who are guilty of rule infractions and are unable to find their way out of town.
Maravillas is an exaggeration reflection of Cuba and what Alice experiences there are almost the same kind of senseless happenings experienced by Carroll's Alice however these reflect the problems of Cuban society--coercion, indoctrination and absolutism.
We never really know why the people were sent to Maravillas (the specific crimes) or how they feel about being there and this is quite possibly what Alice wants to find out. Even though we see the film as a perspective on Cuban society, we never understand why Alice tells us her story. The film, itself, is a wonderful merging of social realism with magic realism and there is truth in its absurdity. Polemic in nature, some have called it overly critical but be that as it may, it is interesting.
Fidel Castro and the Communist Party are targets and this is the first time that this was ever done. Full of metaphors, the film is photographed beautifully. The one drawback is that in order to fully understand the film, a deep knowledge of Cuba is required but that does not mean the film cannot be enjoyed by those without this knowledge. There is something here for everyone who likes irony and satire.