Wonderland

 
Very sordid and unexpectedly dull; adults only.
  • Review Date: February 9, 2004
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Drama
  • Release Year: 2003
  • Running Time: 105 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages
Not applicable
Violence

Graphic violence, characters shot and bludgeoned, some murdered.

Sex

Explicit sexual references and situations, nudity, references to pornography.

Language

Constant profanity.

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Frequent explicit drug use, including heroin and cocaine, smoking and drinking.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this movie includes explicit sexual situations, graphic violence, drug abuse, and constant profanity. It is a veritable encyclopedia of material most parents would consider inappropriate for children and teenagers, though it is all presented as sordid and destructive.

Kids say

Not yet rated
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What's the story?

WONDERLAND depicts the true story of porn star John Holmes and his involvement in a drug-related quadruple murder after his movie career was over. Before the movie starts, we are informed of the essentials: Holmes (Val Kilmer) was the first superstar of porn, making more than 1000 movies and sleeping with more than 14,000 women. But when we meet him, he is no longer making movies. Holmes and his young girlfriend Dawn (Kate Bosworth) have dim hopes of some kind of big score, but mostly live from moment to moment on what's left of Holmes' notoriety. He lives off of the declining good will of some hot-headed small-time bad guys who live on Wonderland Street and one big-time bad guy named Eddie Nash (Eric Bogosian). He comes up with the idea of double-crossing them both at the same time and making off with the loot, but it does not go the way he planned and many people are killed.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Heartfelt performances and tricked-up flashy film-making are not enough to distract us from the fact that we never find a reason to care about what happens. It is all very sordid and unexpectedly dull. Lisa Kudrow's appearance as Holmes' estranged wife is the only character with any depth or humanity.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the different ideas Sharon and John had about what they wanted. Why was Sharon willing to take care of John and Dawn? What was the point of view of the film-makers about what happened to Holmes?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:October 3, 2003
DVD release date:February 9, 2004
Cast:Carrie Fisher, Kate Bosworth, Val Kilmer
Director:James Cox
Studio:Lionsgate
Genre:Drama
Run time:105 minutes
MPAA rating:R
MPAA explanation:strong violence/grisly images, pervasive drug use and language, some sexuality/nudity

This review of Wonderland was written by

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Quality

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Adult Written byPanya April 9, 2008
age 17+
 

Interesting, but not great

I was interested in the story, but it was confusing if you didn't know some things about the topic beforehand. Definitely not for kids.

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