Wednesday, March 9, 2011

In Review: Red Riding Hood

It would be quite obvious to anyone who reads my reviews more than occasionally that I did not go into this film with high expectations. Everything about it screamed that Catherine Hardwicke was trying to relive her "glory" days of directing the first Twilight film. Is there such a thing as "type-directing" like type casting? Cause if there is I would like to request that from now on they only type-direct Hardwicke. As long as I know she is directing I will never again be tricked into thinking that it is going to be anything above terrible.

When the opening credits came on and Billy Burke's name flashed over the screen I thought, "F-cking Charlie? He better not play the dad."...oh, but he did. Not surprising at all. I am actually stunned that Burke was the only Twilight alum to grace the screen in this movie. Hardwicke has such a hard-on for that cast that I thought for sure we would at least see a Peter Facinelli cameo.

As for the film itself...well if you are going to retell a story that has been told a thousand times you should really commit. She did a sub-par job of inserting details of the original story...some were subtle, but most were just thrown in your lap like, "Where are you going?" "I'm off to grandmother's house." And I am pretty sure the creators of this mess were thinking, "Aren't we brilliant?" No, no you are not.

Most of the story was focused on the killing of the werewolf that is terrorizing the town and Valerie's (Amanda Seyfried) decision about which boy she would be with...the rich cute guy or the poor cute guy...both with whom she apparently has no chemistry with at all, so that entire part of the movie is ruined before it even started.

The movie starts out with Valerie and Peter (Shiloh Fernandez) in a forest flirting and then him telling her that she has an arranged marriage with another dude...then five seconds later they are planning their escape from the village...and I was wondering if they had even talked prior to that point. Their complete lack of chemistry is not Hardwicke's fault though. You win some you lose some.

The ending was way too Twilight like for me...I actually started seeing Amanda Seyfried as Kristen Stewart and I wanted to punch myself in the face. But at the end of the day I really think that that was the point. This movie, everything about it, screamed Twihards. They are completely banking on the Twilight lovers to come out in droves to support the woman who first gave them the garbage that they love and see something similar. The story love triangle, the fantasy, the visuals, and even the location (yay for Vancouver I guess) - all similar. The music was even disgustingly familiar...I was honestly waiting the entire movie for a Paramore song.But at the end of the day, similarities aside, will the Twihards stray from their countdown calendars to Breaking Dawn long enough to see it?

In the mean time...non-Twilight lovers, you will want to steer clear of  this dud. It may be a renter...on a night where you have seen all the good flicks and you have a free rental coupon that only allows you to rent Red Riding Hood and no others.

Verdict: 2.1 Stars


After reading Wikipedia I discovered that Leonardo Dicaprio was a producer of this film. This information is soul crushing.

1 comment:

  1. I think Amanda was probably ad-libbing on the "I'm off to grandmother's house" line. In the script I bet it was really "I'm off to grandmother's house, duh" (lip bite). Because Catherine Hardwicke is probably trying to cultivate a bad actress army.


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