In November, ACMI announced its blockbuster show for winter 2018: it’s an invitation down the rabbit hole of cinematic mastery.
Wonderland focuses on the various film and television versions of Lewis Carroll’s literary classic Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. It’s rich territory: from twee animation to pornography, there have been dozens of different screen incarnations of the story – more than 40 in the cinema, and more than 30 on the TV, by our count, since the original screen version in 1903.
The exhibition is being billed as experimental and immersive. The real star will be the special effects used to realise Carroll’s visions, from the earliest optical tricks to contemporary computer animation, from pre-cinematic entertainment and silent film, to puppetry and video games.
The vast catalogue includes, for example, a TV play on the BBC that feels like a monochrome bad trip; a creepy European stop-motion masterpiece; a stage play with a soundtrack by Tom Waits; and this pornographic musical version that is NSFW, obviously.
Which versions ACMI will draw on are yet to be revealed, but we’ll be there at the launch, going mad among the mad people.
This article was updated on February 7, 2018.