ALICE IN WONDERLAND (1915)
Article 4607 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by W.W. Young
Featuring Viola Savoy, Herbert Rice
What it is: Lewis Carroll adaptation
Alice dreams she goes down the rabbit hole into Wonderland.
This version of the Lewis Carroll classic is a serviceable if not particularly inspired series of highlights from the story; one of the more interesting aspects is it tries to be somewhat faithful visually to the Tenniel illustrations. Granted, one person’s highlights may not be the same as the next person’s, but that’s one of the oddities of the original story; as there’s no real plot to speak of, it’s open for the directors and writers to choose which scenes to include and which to exclude. This one includes scenes that most of the others skip (the animal convention and the recitation of “You are Old, Father William” come to mind) while omitting other scenes that I would consider essential (the mad tea party is conspicuously absent). Granted, the full movie was only about fifty minutes, and my print runs only forty minutes, so it could be in the missing footage. Granted, I don’t think there’s really a way for a silent version of this story to be truly effective; most of the charms of the book are verbal, and that requires the advent of sound. Still, it has a little curiosity value.