(We're reposting this review from the Sundance Film Festival to coincide with the film's theatrical release)
By: Kim Voynar
First time writer/director Daniel Barnz knocks it out of the park with Phoebe in Wonderland, an imaginative, layered tale about a young girl struggling to fit in and find her place. Elle Fanning (younger sister of Dakota Fanning) stars as Phoebe, a nine-year-old girl who finds herself struggling against the conformity and rules around her. Phoebe is an intelligent and creative child with a passion for Alice in Wonderland.
Phoebe's attachment to this particular literary obsession is not a coincidence; her mother, Hillary (Felicity Huffman) is writing a book on Wonderland that expounds upon her doctoral dissertation on the subject, so naturally Phoebe sees Alice as a means to be closer to her mother. It's also not coincidental that Phoebe, like Alice, finds the normal world a very boring and rigid place where she doesn't quite fit in, and wishes to escape to a world where anything can happen.