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Alice in Wonderland (2010)

Rather than film Lewis Carroll's Alice, director Tim Burton chose the increasingly common revisionist route. Alice (an excellent Mia Wasikowska) is older; she is being pushed into marriage; she escapes to a land she visited in happier times. The Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp) is a tragic figure and the Red Queen (Helena Bonham Carter, channelling Miranda Richardson's Queen Elizabeth from the TV series Blackadder) crushes all dissent. Visually, it's splendid. Bonuses include a time-lapse view of Bonham Carter's three-hour daily makeup routine.

Life (2010)

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This BBC nature series (from the makers of Planet Earth) was narrated for British television by David Attenborough. The U.S. version is narrated by Oprah Winfrey, whose many skills do not include sounding more interesting and authoritative than Attenborough. The two versions will be available separately on DVD and Blu-ray. There is also a "music only" viewing option, if you'd rather just watch the spellbinding, years-in-the-making shots of animals and plants around the world. Sardines outfox sailfish. Komodo dragons hunt a buffalo.

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