In an adaptation Lewis Carroll’s “Through the Looking-Glass,” set within contemporary Toronto, Alice (Nicole Bauman) boards a streetcar. While a fellow passenger sleeps behind her, Alice has a debate with Tweedledee & Tweedledum (Matt Speirs) about whether or not they really exist or are merely part of the sleeping passenger’s dream world.
Toronto Alice is an animated short film from Toronto-based artist Jennifer Linton that takes its dialogue directly from Lewis Carroll’s “Through the Looking-Glass” but presents the action entirely within contemporary Toronto. The bulk of the plot takes place on a TTC streetcar, and at one point, there is a giant raccoon seen outside of the window. The titular Alice is re-imagined as a toque-wearing girl who has a conversation with the orange-parka-wearing Tweedledee & Tweedledum.
Probably the most notable aspect of Toronto Alice is its very unique animation style. The film is created using a 2D stop-motion process that utilizes paper dolls against drawn backgrounds. This results in Toronto Alice appearing like it is a moving storybook, which is fitting considering how the short is a literary adaptation. This paper doll stop motion has become the main trait for director Jennifer Linton, who has previously made the short films entitled Domestikia: The Incident in the Nursery (2012) and Domestikia: La Petite Mort (2013).
It is almost a shame that the film is only five minutes long since Toronto Alice would make a great feature-length film. However, as it stands, this is a wonderful little short film that brings Lewis Carroll’s characters to life in the city of Toronto. Toronto Alice can streamed, along with Jennifer Linton’s other short films, from her official website.