Red Riding Hood (2011)

Posted: May 28, 2011 in Hollywood
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Red Riding Hood

Storyline

Valerie (Seyfried) is a beautiful young woman torn between two men. She is in love with a brooding outsider, Peter (Fernandez), but her parents have arranged for her to marry the wealthy Henry (Irons). Unwilling to lose each other, Valerie and Peter are planning to run away together when they learn that Valerie’s older sister has been killed by the werewolf that prowls the dark forest surrounding their village. For years, the people have maintained an uneasy truce with the beast, offering the creature a monthly animal sacrifice. But under a blood red moon, the wolf has upped the stakes by taking a human life. Hungry for revenge, the people call on famed werewolf hunter, Father Solomon (Oldman), to help them kill the wolf. But Solomon’s arrival brings unintended consequences as he warns that the wolf, who takes human form by day, could be any one of them. As the death toll rises with each moon… –IMDb

Writer:

David Johnson

Stars:

Amanda SeyfriedShiloh FernandezMax Irons and Gary Oldman

Genres:

 Fantasy | Horror | Mystery | Thriller

Taglines:

 Believe the legend. Beware the wolf.

Who doesn’t know the classic fairy tale of Red Riding Hood? Now, it must be said that even if there are people that haven’t heard of that story it doesn’t matter too much – The story of the film bears very little resemblance to the original fairy tale. Or perhaps you could say that in this version the original has been very considerably ‘fleshed out’.

 

The premise for this is actually rather pleasant, it takes the Red Riding Hood story and kind of twists it around a bit. In this version the town Red Riding Hood (Valerie) lives in a village that has been cursed with a werewolf for two generations. For the last few years the town has been able to appease the beast by offering it livestock during the full moon. Then a young women is killed and then the town goes on the hunt.

Reading that paragraph it sounds that this should be a good entertaining movie, but it falls horribly short of that. This one is what i would like to call a miss-shot! It had a lot of potential and the re-write of the classic story had many ways to become a good thriller. But somehow it fails to suck you in the story. *spoilers alert*(some may find this as a spoiler) The plot that comes as a surprise (sort of) Due to the attention you’ll give the too lover boys you forget there are others suspects who could be the Wolf! *spoilers end*

Even though the identity from the werewolf is kept in mystery for a pretty long time, there is not too much suspense or any sensation of danger, anguish or horror. Due to that uncertainty, Red Riding Hood lacks of identity, because it is frightened of being too violent for the teenage girls, and it does not entirely delivered to the romance in order not to drive away to fans of horror cinema either. The result is that the film fails in every aspect. Otherwise, while I like the idea of reinterpreting tradition fairy stories in darker films, this movie is a chaotic mess. It simply doesn’t know what to be or how to be it. I would have loved to like it, but it is a couple of hours of tedious nonsense with a thread of “Guess who is the werewolf?” running through it.

A still from Red Riding Hood

Concerning the actors, especially the younger cast, beautiful as they might have been their acting was most lacking, with the exception of Amanda of course, who delivered the role of Valerie spot on. she’s the perfect Red Riding Hood: sweet, goth, dark and just perfectly beautiful! Shiloh Fernandez, who plays her love interest Peter, looks continually perplexed by everything, almost as though he is trying hard to remember his lines. Max Irons as Henry, the man Valerie is betrothed to doesn’t impress as well. Let’s put it this way when you’re out acted by a computer generated wolf there is something wrong. However, the senior cast did not disappoint. Julie Christie perfectly cast as Grandma. Billy Burke is great as the drunkard Cesaire. Gary Oldman is brilliant as always, however, his character Father Solomon feels too lightweight. He should have been let off the leash and allowed to take the character to the edge of madness. More should have been made of the men he brought with him to fight the beast but they are generally glossed over.

Nevertheless, the filming style and the way the town is depicted is beautiful. The cinematography is enchanting. There is also a twilight-esque feel to the relationship triangle characters as the movie is directed by the same director. The rawness of the soundtrack works to good effect, helping to create a fraught atmosphere.

Overall, not terrible, but deeply flawed and over-ambitious. Teenagers may find the movie pretty good. I rate it 5 out of 10 for being beautiful and mind-blowing cinematography.

Watch the trailer…

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